Mental health, once considered a taboo topic, is now encouraged globally. Whether at homes, schools, or even companies, almost everyone seems to be doing their part in promoting individuals to look after their mental health just as they would after their physical and emotional well-being.
Unfortunately, encouragement is not enough. With encouragement, it is also necessary to be aware of mental health issues and their signs. Why? So that when the need arises, you can give your peers, friends, and family the support they need. However, the question is: What does it look like in the workplace? Let’s find out.
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Eye-Opening Statistics on Mental Health in the Workplace
The workplace environment can significantly impact an individual’s mental health. It can be the other way around as well. Both poor and good mental health can affect the workplace in terms of productivity, presenteeism, absenteeism, employee turnover, and other areas.
Let’s first look at some statistics on the impact of mental health in the workplace and vice versa.
- Worldwide, depression and anxiety are thought to account for 12 billion days of work missed each year, costing US$ 1 trillion in productivity losses.
- Women (8%) who work full-time are almost twice as likely as males (10.9%) to experience a prevalent mental health issue.
- 82% of employees diagnosed with a mental disorder do not disclose it to their managers. Common justifications include concern over their career, embarrassment, and potential job loss.
- According to the World Health Organization (WHO), in the first year of the COVID-19 outbreak, the incidence of depression and anxiety rose by 25%
- Two-thirds of workers say that their job has a negative impact on their sleep. As a coping tactic, half of the participants admitted to engaging in other hazardous activities, including consuming alcohol and smoking.
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Common Reasons for Poor Mental Health in Employees
Some of the most common reasons behind mental illness resulting from the workplace environment include the following–
- Stress and burnouts.
- Insufficient resources or tools to work with.
- Under-use of skills.
- Being under-skilled for a particular role.
- Inflexible work hours and deadlines.
- Feeling a lack of control over what you do.
- Unsafe working conditions.
- Discrimination at the workplace.
- Bullying and harassment by peers or seniors.
- Inadequate pay or unequal pay.
- Lack of social support and financial protection.
- Economic recessions and increasing unemployment.
What Does a Struggling Team Member Look Like?
Everyone has a bad day. And that’s okay. However, if the behavior persists, then it becomes a concern. Here are a few common signs of struggling individuals you must look out for in your team members –
- Significant reduction in your team member’s outputs or participation.
- Inability to manage time.
- Constantly feeling tired.
- Lacks the motivation to do something they would typically enjoy.
- Slow withdrawal from conversations.
- Changes in appearance, especially if the team member is always groomed well.
- Constantly complains about things around them.
- An overall negative outlook on situations, work, and life in general.
- A breakdown in communication.
- Feeling easily frustrated or agitated over menial things.
- Inability to make coherent decisions regarding routine work tasks.
- Failing to meet their responsibilities.
- Missing deadlines.
- Consuming alcohol or smoking excessively to repress anxiety or cope with stress.
- An unexpected pattern of arriving late or absenteeism.
- Zoning out and inability to concentrate during important meetings and tasks.
- Forgetting everyday routines or tasks.
- Signs of physical issues like constant headaches
These are a few indicators that may help you identify the team members who need your assistance. Often, mental health illness symptoms start small, becoming grave as the situation demands more than what the individual can cope with.
However, there is always a scope for prevention. As an employer, you must ensure a positive working environment with no stigma around mental illness. Furthermore, you must provide your employees with all the necessary resources to help them perform at their best.
Additionally, it would be best to onboard a counselor your employees can talk to when they feel the need. You may also make it compulsory for your employees to complete courses on mental health. These courses are available with the British Safety Council India, a forerunner and ardent supporter of occupational health, safety, and well-being with over 60 years of experience. The courses will undoubtedly help your employees better understand mental health. So why not try them?