As the saying goes, “Work is worship,” It holds true that a productive life is a meaningful one and the workplace is somewhere an employee learns to thrive and excel. Working and yielding results in any organization can lead to more meaningful and purpose-driven life.
At times, the 9 to 5 routine can be grinding and mundane. However, if an employee is paid well, given ample opportunities, and appreciated for the work he or she does, then working can become an act of devotion and hold a significant amount of importance in anyone’s life.
However, since this routine is a daily grind, lack of work satisfaction and rewards on anyone’s productivity can take a toll on an employee. Demotivation, stress, feelings of being under-valued, and being fatigued and over-worked are general symptoms of an unhappy or unappreciated employee.
Dissatisfaction with work can lead to severe mental health troubles. Other than work dissatisfaction harassment, bullying, and the pressure to perform at work can also lead to severe mental health problems amongst the employee.
Deteriorating mental health can further lead to mental impairments such as memory loss or writing and hearing problems. An app called Brain Test is available at the App Store which helps patients and individuals screen all of these impairments that they are facing. A BrainTest Review asserts that it gives close to accurate results of brain screening of the patients.
According to the World Health Organization, the economy of the world suffers a loss of one trillion US dollars regarding productivity due to depression and anxiety-related disorders.
The stressful workplace can adversely affect the interpersonal relationships of the employees. A Workplace Health Survey conducted by Mental Health America revealed that offering workplace perks was very impactful regarding creating employee engagement and retaining.
The workplaces which ranked highest in being unhealthy for employees were those who did not offer any perks or benefits for working at the organization. On the contrary, the workplaces deemed healthiest to work at were providing flexible working hours, opportunities for professional growth and relaxed environment.
- Create awareness and remove stigma against mental problems and issues faced by employees
More often than not, employers and the higher management are more discriminatory and biased against employees with mental health issues than those with physical health problems. Consequently, financial aid, security, and often free treatment is offered to the latter group of employees. However, the majority of times, an employee who is chronically depressed or is going through anxiety is least likely to be acknowledged even for what he is going through.
As an employer, it is essential to create such a comfortable environment that mental health can be discussed in the workplace without any stigma attached. A workforce that is stressed, depressed or anxious cannot manage to be very productive and can cause a loss to the company. Thus, the employer needs to discuss and remove all kinds of negative sentiments borne by co-workers and employees regarding depression and mental illnesses. He must hone an environment which is conducive to workers going through any type of psychological health problem.
Often at work, clinically depressed people are mistaken for being lazy, dull or anti-social. Not everyone can be chirpy and extroverted all the time at work. The stigma regarding people suffering from anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorders or depression has to be removed so that the organization can progress through the optimum utilization of the human resources.
- Practicing Mindfulness at work
Improved internal focus and regular breaks to assess the way an employee is feeling can be beneficial to aid the mental health situations at work.
Just like in life, when you step back and analyze how you feel about a particular situation, you automatically start moving towards solutions; similarly, at work, the same practice of mindfulness can be followed and encouraged.
If employees take time to practice mindfulness about the anxiety or depressive disorders they are facing, they can eventually realize what factors trigger them and work to reduce those factors. They can also improve the communication channels with the management to reduce their self-analyzed triggers.
- Providing work flexibility
When flexibility in working hours and locations is provided to employees, they feel more empowered and liberated. It enhances their productivity and helps them in their everyday life so they can pay attention to their personal experiences as well.
Research by the Loughborough University in the UK has suggested that working for long periods of time is directly related to unhappiness and lack of well-being.
If the working hours for an employee are feasible and flexible, this will give him/her time to exercise, manage stress and create space for leisure activities as well. These things can significantly aid a person who is trying to cope with high-pressure situations at work.
- Emotional Intelligence Developmental Training
Not everyone is naturally adept at having a very high level of emotional intelligence or soft skills. A company that values soft skills such as empathy, patience, ability to resolve conflict, co-operation, and ability to manage teams thrives more than a company that is solely focused on stiff-collared, highly intelligent, results-oriented employees.
Moreover, by encouraging training aimed at enhancing the employees’ emotional capacity and intelligence, especially at managerial level, an organization can positively impact the mental health status quo.
Many people at managerial level do not realize that they are bullying, unnecessarily pressurizing, or harassing their subordinates; thus, causing them a great deal of stress. It is up to the employer to train the managers to exercise courtesy and harmony when dealing with their co-workers. Different types of professions can cause different types of stress and triggers for employees.
- Two-way Communication
Communication should be open, and two way at all levels of the organization. This way, workplace stress can be significantly reduced among the employees. When employees have any triggers, they can communicate openly about those workplace stressors. It will help in creating a positive environment in the workplace.
Ensuring that people who are stressed or are facing any other mental stressor at work have their opinions heard can also lead to reaching solutions to their problems.