In these unprecedented times of COVID-19, Mental Health Awareness Week is taking place from Monday 18th May to Sunday 24th May and has never been more important.
Mental health is about how we think, feel and behave. Anxiety and depression are the most common mental health problems. They are often a reaction to a difficult life event, such as bereavement, but can also be caused by work-related issues. Whilst we adapt and change our lives personally and within our work environment, disruption and anxiety is impossible to ignore and can have a huge impact on the way we function and cope with the challenges of everyday life.
Society has been forced to re-evaluate how we work and how we approach different tasks. Whether work is causing the health issue or aggravating it, employers have a legal responsibility to help their employees. Work-related mental health issues must be assessed to measure the levels of risk to staff. Where a risk is identified, steps must be taken to remove it or reduce it as far as reasonably practicable.
As an employer, you can help manage and prevent stress by improving conditions at work. With a huge majority of employees now working from home, this support is now more important than ever to stop feelings of isolation and anxiety escalating. But you also have a role in making adjustments and helping someone manage a mental health problem at work. Communication and flexibility in workloads are key in keeping motivation and productivity flowing.
Mental health awareness week have highlighted “kindness” as their theme this year and are using this week to celebrate the thousands of acts of kindness that are so important to mental health. The kind of society that could shape and emerge from this pandemic may be one of an improved quality, with more care being shown for not only our families but employees too. According to research from the Mental Health Foundation, a charity for everyone’s mental health, 72 per cent of workers believe that we should become kinder as a society following COVID-19.
This theme has come through too from my Son’s senior school and he has demonstrated many random acts of kindness over the last few weeks since we have seen ourselves working together in the same office. He has seen me positively stressed in a very different way to what he normally sees in his everyday life and we have supported each other with life’s mishaps, a family bereavement and juggling tasks and struggling to keep on top of school work and business developments. Those random acts of kindness – a kiss or a hug, a favourite hot chocolate or coffee, sharing of chocolate have certainly brought us closer together and helped us get through more challenging times.
As a growing company I am always looking to find ways of how we can support each other and ensure that we check in and give any support that they may need – our people are our everything!
So as a company we applaud this change to encouraging a nicer and supportive society and look forward to an even more kinder and positive workplace future.
For further information on how mental health awareness can impact your business, please contact us here.
For more information on Mental Health Awareness Week please visit the site here: https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk