Why is Mental Health in the Workplace So Important?

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Sarvika Aggarwal

08 January 2024

7 Mins

Nowadays, mental health in the workplace is a top priority rather than simply a fun thing to have. With the increasing number of cases of stress and anxiety in the workplace, it is a no-brainer that companies should opt for mental health awareness in the workplace.

A study on this shows how workplace wellness programs actually contribute to savings rather than losses as they decrease absenteeism costs and push employees to work to their full potential.

If you wish to understand more about why mental health at work is important, then let’s dive into it.

What Is Employee Mental Health?

When we talk about mental health, it simply means the capability to face the daily stressors of life, manage work, enjoy life, and live to your full potential. And when we combine mental health with employees, it means the capability of employees to handle daily tasks, manage stress, maintain work-life balance, have workplace boundaries, and give other things in their lives equal importance to avoid burnout.

Employee mental health doesn’t mean that the employee gives everything of themselves to their work; it means overall happiness, which comes out in their work, their personal lives, and when they are with themselves. Their overall health and wellness contribute to their employee wellness, which makes up for employee mental health.

The Importance of Discussing Mental Health in Workplace

The days of masking your emotions or not taking leaves because of mental health issues are gone. People, especially of the current generation, are quite open about mental health issues and how seriously they can tamper with the overall wellbeing of individuals. So talking about mental health in the workplace is quite important, as careers and jobs play a significant role in an individual’s overall wellbeing.

When we start discussing the importance of mental health in the workplace, it will not only bring a positive change in the employees work, but it will also show a boost in their productivity, motivation, and overall happiness. It will increase their chances to work from office and bring a lot of creative ideas to the workplace.

When one starts to discuss mental health issues in the workplace, it doesn’t impact the individual solely; it impacts the office as a whole. So discussing such issues is extremely important to keep employees healthy and happy.

discussing mental health in workplace

There are a lot of work-related risk factors that can harm your mental health and you should be aware of them. They are:

1. Poor management practices

When the management, which is the base of any company, doesn’t communicate properly or abuses your position by assigning you unnecessary work or making you feel you are not capable enough for your job, it can deeply hinder your mental health at work and in general.

2. Low level of support

Managers who expect you to do all the work without any support and do not define your key responsibilities and task lists can deeply hinder your motivation and the will to show up for work.

3. Performance pressure

Usually, companies hire one employee for a two person job and expect them to do all the work when they are not paid enough for it. This creates a lot of pressure for the employee to perform well and make ends meet, which can put them under a lot of stress and anxiety.

4. Inadequate policies

It is important in today’s time to have proper workplace and health policies so that employees feel safe where they are spending most of the hours of their day. It is extremely important that employees are briefed about the office policies and are made aware of any special acts they would need in unfortunate times.

5. Unrealistic goals and expectations

It can be quite pressuring when your manager is constantly bombarding you with unrealistic expectations and goals that are hard to manage on your own without any assistance or guidance. This can lead to working late hours and a serious case of burnout and chronic stress.

work related risk factors

How Can Mental Health Issues Affect Your Job?

In simple words, what you feel, you show. In this scenario, your mental health will determine how you perform at work. If you are not feeling well and are going through deep mental health issues, then your work will not be up to the mark, and somewhere or another, it will show in your work for sure.

However, if you are feeling good, your positive energy will pass on to your work and you will perform to the best of your ability. When you are feeling negative and not so good, that energy will show up in your work in the following ways:

  1. Low productivity
  2. Lack of engagement
  3. Poor decision making
  4. Low attention to detail
  5. Poor concentration
  6. Miscommunication
  7. Reduced motivation and ability to work
  8. High absenteeism
  9. Showing up late
  10. Missing deadlines or meetings

How Can Mental Health Issues Affect Your Job

Ways to Promote Mental Health in the Workplace

When we talk about promoting mental health in the workplace, there are many ways we can consider spreading awareness. Some of them are as follows:

As an Employer:

1. Employee wellness programs

Including an EWP in your workplace will highly benefit your employees, as they will understand how to manage the daily stressors of life along with how to maintain work-life balance. More importantly, they will get clarity on how to have firm boundaries and how to act on things that are hindering their mental peace.

2. Fun trips

If your employees are working hard all year long, they deserve to go on fun trips where all the employees and teammates can have fun and get to know each other outside of the office. This will boost their relationships and foster a deep friendship among them.

3. Health insurance

You can help your employees by covering their prescriptions for medications and mental health counseling.

4. Relaxation and meditative spaces

You can make dedicated spaces of relaxation and meditation where employees can go and chill alone and feel better.

As an Employee:

1. Take part in fun trips

If your organization is planning trips and taking you on a holiday to rejuvenate, take part in it, as that will enhance your productivity and relationships in the workplace.

2. Talk about mental health awareness

If you feel no one else talks about mental health awareness in the workplace, you can start doing it so that people can normalise it.

3. Practice self-care

Indulge yourself in doing self-care rituals like meditation, going for a walk, taking frequent breaks from work, or going on a vacation.

4. Take care of your physical health

Mental health is intertwined with physical health and when it comes to looking after your mental wellbeing, physical health needs to be in place too.

Ways to Promote Mental Health in the Workplace

Why Should Companies Worry About Mental Health?

Companies should worry about the mental health of their employees, as the health of the employees will determine the health of their company. If your employees are not performing well, it will definitely show in the work they submit. Although companies feel they shouldn’t intrude on their employees mental space or ask about their health, it will show up in their work by default.

That is why it is important that companies step up and take the necessary steps to make their employees feel safe, secure, and happy while they are at work. They can do this by hiring an organizational therapist or by signing up for an employee wellness program, which helps individuals speak about their problems and feel at ease in their workplace.

Why Should Companies Worry About Mental Health

Redefine Mental Health in the Workplace With Now&Me

If you are looking for an employee wellness program at affordable rates that offers your employees a customised plan and an analytic report of how the EWP helped your employees, then you are at the right place.

With the Now&Me Employee Wellness Program, you can get high productivity, improved performance, stronger business outcomes, and a healthier workplace for your employees. Along with this, you will get customised metrics, weekly check-ins, multiple domain experts, self-help resources, and instant customer support ready for you and your employees anytime of the day.

If you wish to know more about this, you can contact us at partnerships@nowandme.com and we will get back to you right away.

Sources

  1. The importance of mental health in the workplace. Published May 2022. https://www.betterup.com/blog/mental-health-in-the-workplace

  2. Effects of Mental Health in the Workplace & Why It’s Important. Published April 2023. https://www.paychex.com/articles/human-resources/workplace-mental-health-effects

Now&Me articles are written by experienced mental health contributors and are purely based on scientific research and evidence-based practices, which are thoroughly reviewed by experts, including therapists and psychologists with various specialties, to ensure accuracy and alignment with current industry standards.

However, it is important to note that the information provided is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Individual circumstances vary, and it is advisable to consult with a qualified mental health professional for personalized advice and guidance.

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