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Five Ways To Improve Mental Health At The Workplace

According to Mental Health America, 9 out of 10 employees state that workplace stress affects their mental health. Additionally, according to the Mental Health Foundation in the UK, 1 out 7 people experience mental health issues at the workplace. Women are believed to be twice as likely to experience such conditions. What has changed in so many years that mental health is a leading concern at the workplace?

A few leading causes of poor workplace mental health include lousy time management, workplace pressure, and annoying bosses. Also, a sedentary lifestyle and declining physical Health merely add more to the problem.

Poor workplace mental Health can severely impede employee performance and an organization’s ability to generate returns on its investments in a highly competitive business environment. Moreover, decreased employee satisfaction levels can also result in a bad name for the business in the market and increased employee turnover. Therefore, it is necessary to timely address this concern before it spirals down into a bigger problem. With that said, listed below are a few tips that might help improve mental health at the workplace.

Raise Awareness

Leaders and managers in the workplace must understand numerous work-related factors that lead to a decline in employees’ mental health. Moreover, they need to employ dedicated resources to help employees identify the causes of stress and burnout on the job.

Companies can raise awareness about mental health issues by hiring on-site wellness managers and counselors. These individuals can provide one-on-one therapy sessions to employees facing stress. They can also develop mental health management programs to tackle the issue on a company-wide level. Alternatively, companies can also upskill existing HR personnel with necessary qualifications, such as a Master of Science in Applied Psychology, to save the additional cost of hiring new resources. Over the years, subjects such as psychology have amassed considerable popularity and individuals can easily acquire a MAPP online to upgrade their skills. With the proper knowledge, trained organizational psychologists can help raise awareness about workplace mental health issues and resolve them.

Listen to employees

Business owners and managers also need to acknowledge their employees’ negative feelings. They must sit down and understand why their workers are feeling stressed out. They must actively listen to their concerns and grievances and work to alleviate them. It will make them feel more comfortable and develop a sense of loyalty towards the organization.

Stress on the job leads to employee demotivation and engagement. This, in turn, results in low productivity levels. Being there for employees and listening to their concerns can considerably help manage the organizational climate and employee stress levels.

Manage time properly

Most employees would be willing to throw their bosses under the bus as the number one source of their work-related mental health problems. However, there’s no denying that poor time management also plays a significant role in worsening the condition. This includes not managing work-related tasks on time, crunching deadlines, doing office work beyond work hours, etc. Bad time management can affect employee’s personal lives as well, further aggravating mental health issues.

In order to deal with this, employees should focus on using appropriate time management tools to plan and manage work-related tasks. By tracking their tasks and deadlines, employees can significantly reduce stress levels and burnout on the job. Moreover, managers and coworkers must respect each other’s time and ensure that office work does not spill over others’ time beyond the job hours. This will ensure that employees have a proper work-life balance, which is essential for mental and physical well-being.

Change office ergonomics

Some physical changes to the physical space can significantly help to enhance the working environment and reduce stress. Workplace ambiance has a profound impact on overall employee mood and productivity. Some very unorthodox changes include working in Jacuzzis and swimming pools. Google’s office has a giant slide for employees to go down from a higher level. Some offices also allow employees to bring their pets to the workplace to de-stress and keep their morale high.

While such additions may not be feasible for every organization to adopt, every company can take a few steps to promote better mental health. For instance, creating workspaces that foster teamwork, warm lighting, and colors induce a positive mood, such as neutrals, green and light shades of blue. The right ambiance can help to decrease negative emotions and feelings in the workplace and alleviate symptoms of stress and anxiety. Additionally, it can also increase employee productivity, thereby benefiting the company in multiple ways.

A proper diet

A proper diet can help improve employees’ Health. Unfortunately, the office pantry and vending machines are generally stuffed with unhealthy, sugary foods that affect the body’s weight and augment symptoms of stress and anxiety.  Diets with high sugar content are known to trigger mood disorders such as depression. Therefore, office management should be careful when stalking unhealthy edibles in the office pantry. Also, employees need to watch what they put in their mouths.

A diet rich in foods that increase serotonin levels will help to calm the minds of stressed-out individuals on the job. Cereals, oats, and pasta are a good substitute for low-quality sugar snacks.

Conclusion

According to Mental Health America, 3 out of 5 employees feel that they don’t receive enough support from their employers to deal with work-related mental health issues. This is detrimental in the long run as it affects individuals’ well-being and a company’s prosperity. This article went over a few ways to improve mental health at the workplace. These include creating more awareness, managing time, creating a positive ambiance, and focusing on a healthy diet. By following the tips mentioned above, employers can help to keep their workforce mentally healthy and thus more productive on the job.

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