If you work full-time, then your occupation defines your daily schedule and routine. For most of your waking hours, you’re spending it in the workplace, so it’s not surprising that your job is going to influence a few facets of your life. One of these is your mental health.
No matter what kind of occupation you have, there’ll always be days when your job can get on top of you—the stressors pile up, there are problems at work, some workmates may be toxic, and the deadlines are waving hello, among others. Then, add up to these your personal stressors as well.
These are normal occurrences in life. However, there are things you can do to keep your mental health good, especially in the workplace (part of broader wellness in the workplace). Here’s how:
1. Speak Openly About Mental Health
There may still be individuals who treat matters relating to mental health as taboo, and your workplace shouldn’t form part of those. The more you recognize the importance of mental health, the happier your workforce also becomes.
Make it a company culture to talk openly about mental health. This shouldn’t be a matter of gossip in your workplace; your employees should have people in your workplace to talk about these matters, usually from your human resources (HR) department.
Many professionals who work in HR have a background in psychology, so they can help. Remember that the HR team isn’t just there for matters relating to administrative functions. They also ensure every single employee is well accounted for in the office.The culture starts from the top until everyone in the staff feels and trusts that mental health problems aren’t a stigma. The more openly you talk about it in the office, the higher the chances these can be addressed in its early stage. Click here to learn more about the possible treatment forms to address these mental health concerns.
2. Keep An Active Lifestyle
Encourage physical exercise at work. For instance, you may want to have a ‘Fitness Friday’ routine wherein after office hours, everyone stays for half an hour more to exercise together. This is great to give everyone a push to exercise. Who knows, maybe if not for that routine, some employees may never find the time to have physical activities on their own. Plus, it’s fun to exercise with others, too!
During your lunch breaks, you may also want to consider taking a walk around the block. Even a simple half-hour walk does wonders to give you that added activity, keeping your mind alert and focused.
Exercising is great for your mental health. During the time you spend walking, you could contemplate and think of the many things bothering your mind. After you’ve done that, you’ll notice a change in your mood and you’ll be able to concentrate better at work.
Along that line, regular exercise has the following benefits on your mental health:
- It can make you happier since regular exercise increases the production of endorphins, which produces more positive feelings and reduces the onset of pain;
- It’s a great energy booster, especially if you start to notice your mental health may be affecting your energy levels;
- It improves your relaxation and sleep quality as you’re able to release all of the tension you’ve been keeping from whatever mental load you’ve been carrying.
3. Pay Attention To Your Co-Workers
Your workplace should feel like a family. If you work in upper management—you’re the owner, department head, and more so if you work in the HR department—pay attention to your co-workers. Don’t just go about your day performing tasks without being observant of everyone around you.
If you notice something’s off or unusual with someone in the workplace, be ready to help. Talk to them in private and make them feel they can safely confide in you. Build a rapport that you can be someone they can lean onto when they have problems.
When you create a culture of attentiveness and willingness to help others out, everyone feels like they belong in a family. You never know the problems one may be facing but afraid to speak of. Financial burdens, family problems, domestic violence, and others are only a few.
Even if they tell you they’re fine, at least give them a sincere assurance that whenever they need someone to talk to outside work-related matters, you can be a friend for them. After all, everybody wants to feel heard and valued.
4. Bring In More Natural Light
If your workplace isn’t well-ventilated, then it’s going to feel dark and cold. Natural light can uplift an individual’s mood and well-being. Just imagine a time when you’re so stressed and you feel the need to go out for a walk. When you finally do, you suddenly start to feel better again.
It’s because of the light and the sun! So, if your workplace doesn’t have windows and open spaces, bring in more natural light when the time comes for you to start renovating again. This has good effects on your mental wellness such as:
- It may fight off seasonal depression, especially during the autumn and winter months (if you live in a four-seasoned country);
- It may improve your sleep, improving your mood and mental well-being as you’re able to rest well at night.
With these tips, your workplace can be a place where you can thrive and grow. Apart from earning a living, it’s also in your workplace where you can grow and become a better individual. You can also gain friendships and a family beyond the professional relationships you’ve cultivated.
A toxic work environment is corrosive to your health, and since you spend a majority of your waking hours and weekdays working, you wouldn’t want this to be the case. Good mental health and efficient employees go hand-in-hand; and when these tips are followed, you can also become the best version of yourself not just in the workplace, but in all other facets of life. Consider the ideas mentioned here as you promote mental wellness in your work culture.
Want to learn more about wellness benefits? Schedule an introductory call with IncentFit to discuss ways you can keep a pulse on employee health, or offer incentives for participating in important health screenings!