According to the National Alliance on Mental Health, 1 in 5 Americans experience mental illness each year, and the workplace is no exception. May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and it serves as a time to reflect and educate oneself on the prevalence of mental health issues, particularly in professional environments.
At Work Shield, we know the impact that poor mental health can have on every area of a person’s life, including their work, which is why it’s important to keep mental health issues at the forefront at all times. From checking in on co-workers to establishing programs that support mental health, there are a variety of ways that companies and employees can boost overall wellbeing at work. On this week’s blog, we’re rounding up three ways to ensure that mental health is prioritized in the workplace.
Establishing and maintaining personal boundaries within the workplace is an important step in protecting mental health. Research shows that workers with greater boundary control over their work and personal lives were better at creating a stress buffer to prevent negative mental health impacts. Beneficial boundaries can include being less responsive to work issues after hours, speaking out when disrespected by colleagues, and fully disconnecting when taking time off of work. Your boundaries should be personal to you and your core values.
Studies have shown that taking breaks not only improves productivity, but it also improves overall mental wellbeing. With many professionals still working remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it can be especially tough to take breaks, as the lines between work and home life are blurred. Whether it’s committing to a lunch break away from your desk, signing up for an exercise class or making plans for a virtual happy hour, scheduling breaks within your day enhances productivity and is beneficial to your mental health.
Gratitude is an easy way to improve self-esteem and build stronger connections in the workplace. Research has found that practicing gratitude on a regular basis can have a positive impact on the brain that results in reduced anxiety and stress levels. You can incorporate thankfulness into your workday by finding intentional ways to connect with co-workers by expressing appreciation of their work or taking time to make a personal list of the things you are grateful for in your professional life.
This month and every month, Work Shield is committed to creating workplaces that promote mental wellness for all. To learn more, contact us here.
Corrigan is part of the Work Shield sales team. Her interest in becoming part of the team is rooted in her belief that workplaces should feel safe and comfortable for employees. She sees Work Shield as the perfect platform for employees to be able to voice concerns, knowing their input could lead to the betterment of their workplace culture as a whole.