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  • Writer's pictureRebecca Stone, LMHC

Mental Health in the Workplace: World Mental Health Day

October 10th is World Mental Health Day. For 2017, the focus is on Mental Health in the Workplace.

You may be wondering, "Why is this topic so important?" Well, it's quite important for many reasons:

In addition to the above:

  • One in four people are likely to meet the criteria for a mental health diagnosis at some point in their lives.

  • The percentage of people living with depression increased by more than 18% from 2005 to 2015.

  • Stress, depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions can negatively impact an individual’s functioning, both in and out of the workplace.

  • Untreated mental health conditions can lead to poor work performance, lower concentration and productivity, absenteeism, reduced income for the employee/family, more workplace accidents, and many other consequences.

  • Mental health stigmas and discrimination can place barriers to people accessing mental health.

  • A positive, pro-mental health workplace culture can have a positive impact for all involved.

  • Investment in and access to mental health services can result in a four-fold return on investment for individuals and their families, their communities, and the economy.

Depression in the Workplace may "look" different than people may expect:

What can you, as an employee, do for your mental health?

Some of these suggestions may help you have a better workplace experience:

  • Practice regular self-care, such as honoring your lunch break (no working during lunch!), leaving work at work, planning activities outside of work that you enjoy or relax while doing.

  • Maintain holistic wellness (intellectual, social, emotional, physical, spiritual, as well as occupational) in support of a well-rounded and balanced life.

  • Utilize assertive communication, voicing what you’re experiencing and what you need while respecting yourself and those with whom you are speaking.

  • Write down work-related “to do” items or similar if you find these types of thoughts popping up outside of work. Bring the list/notes with you to work so you can follow-up during work hours.

  • Learn coping strategies to help you get through stressful times.

  • Challenge unhelpful thought patterns that keep you stuck in a negative or stressful mindset.

  • Seek professional counseling.


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