Sadly, mental health problems in the workplace are not uncommon; around 1 in 6 workers suffer from mental health problems, and, according to research from Mind, around 1 in 5 people say they've called in sick to work to avoid workplace stress. In fact, 30% of workers disagreed with the statement, 'I would feel able to talk openly with my line manager if I was feeling stressed', and 42% had considered resigning when asked how workplace stress had affected them.
Something needs to change. Starting a conversation about mental health at work might feel like a complicated feat, but it doesn't have to be. Below are some helpful resources to support mental health in the workplace however big or small your company is.
Mind is a fantastic charity that works to get everyone with mental health problems the support and respect the deserve. They provide support and advice to anyone currently experiencing a mental health problem and continuously campaign to promote understanding, raise awareness and improve services. They have a range of resources on their website; here are a few of our favourites.
An Introduction to Mentally Healthy Workplaces is just that, an introduction to how to create a mentally healthy workplace, what it might look like, and why it is are beneficial for both employers and employees. In addition, this guide talks about promoting well-being for all staff, how to tackle the causes of work-related mental health problems, and how to support team members who are experiencing mental health problems.
How to Support Staff Who Are Experiencing a Mental Health Problem is a fantastic document that outlines how employers can create a culture that supports staff to be open about their mental health and support someone experiencing a mental health problem.
How to be Mentally Healthy at Work is a guide for employees, detailing how to take care of their mental health whilst working, how to detect any changes, and what to do if they experience a bout of poor mental health.
Another great organisation with plenty of free, helpful resources online is Time to Change. They sought to end mental health discrimination but closed their campaign recently in March 2021. They have worked with 7,500 people with mental health problems, 3,500 secondary schools, youth sector organisations and colleges, and 1500 employers. While they might have retired their campaign, all of their brilliant resources are still available online.
Their Mental Health Stigma Pub Quiz is a great and fun way to get teams talking about the stigma that can be attached to even admitting you're experiencing a mental health problem. Learning and listening as a group might help improve workplace attitudes to mental health.
Managing Conversations about Mental Wellbeing is a document that aims to equip employers with the tools they need to support their staff should they experience some mental health issues. In addition, it provides suggestions regarding how to handle delicate conversations in a respectful, supportive way.
Am I Reeaally Fine? is an activity to be done in a group that seeks to overturn our habit of insisting we are fine when asked how we are. Instead, it encourages us to open up, be more honest about our emotions and subsequent mental health in the hopes of cultivating more communication on the matter and thus create a mentally healthier workforce.
Perhaps one of the best-known mental health charities, this organisation provides lots of valuable and free resources for managing mental health. Some are specific to the workplace, and others can be used generically. The Mental Health Foundation state that prevention is at the heart of their work, and most of their publications are around day-to-day mental health management. Downloadable or available to order, there are a vast amount of topics around mental health on offer. Below we have selected a couple that would be specifically of use for the workplace:
How to Support Mental Health at Work is a guide that aims to increase your understanding of how to manage your mental health at work and how to reach out to others around you that might be struggling. As an employer or manager, this document also provides a helpful checklist to guide you on creating a mentally healthy workplace.
Looking after your mental health while working during coronavirus is a page is about mental health and work during the coronavirus outbreak. It addresses the uncertainty and new challenges that coronavirus brought to our working lives and how to consider the impact on our mental health as we move forwards.
By sharing these mental health resources for the workplace with your employees and colleagues, you can help foster a workplace environment that positively impacts mental health and wellbeing.
If you found this article helpful and also want to consider more specific advice around how to keep your teams happy within the UX and Development sectors, you may also be interested in:
Developer Retention: How to keep you Developers Happy
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