In 2019, the World Health Organization estimated that 15% of working-age adults had a mental health disorder, and this figure is likely to have grown since the pandemic. Mental health is not only about averting illness; it is also about our capacity to manage ordeals, accomplish our ambitions, carry out well at school or in the workplace, and make valuable contributions to society. Unfortunately, mental well-being tends to take a backseat amidst our busy schedules and lists of priorities.
Our daily activities in the workplace take up a lot of our time and energy, making it impossible to overlook conversations on mental health. Although work provides an income, it also brings with it a sense of confidence and purpose, coupled with opportunities to converse with others and somewhere to follow a routine. However, certain job components or working patterns can be damaging to our emotional stability, including inadequate job control and progress, as well as any bullying/harassment experienced at work.
Organizations have a major role in ensuring their people maintain good mental health and well-being. Unluckily, most cases of mental illness are not treated, mainly due to lack of awareness, access and affordability. This is where organizations can fill this void by facilitating frank conversations around mental health, providing easy access to services, and supplying financial assistance for treatments. All these measures are now being taken by organizations to take care of the welfare of their employees.
Jointly, individuals and organizations must emphasize health and well-being by creating a culture that values work-life balance. It all starts in the workplace – we need to practice time management, and delegation of tasks and learn when it is appropriate to set boundaries for ourselves by declining requests that are too demanding. Short breaks should not be neglected, even if it feels like we don’t have enough time. These pauses can help us regain focus and maximize productivity.
Having a balanced life means being just as engaged in your personal life as you are with work. Spend quality time with those that you care about, be open and honest in conversations, and allocate some ‘me’ time for yourself. Don’t let go of essential things like eating, exercising, and sleeping well. Have fun too – practice a sport, start a hobby that interests you, or find something peaceful that helps destress you. Finally, don’t forget that it is important to access help if needed – It could be talking to someone close to you or seeking assistance from a professional – whatever works best for your situation!
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