It can be hard enough to work full-time. However, when you also have a mental health issue to cope with it can really start to weigh you down.
Here we take a look at anxiety and depression in the workplace: how you can discuss your mental health with your employer and colleagues, as well as what you should do if you become a victim of discrimination.
It really isn’t ‘just you’
The Mental Health Foundation has recently released figures which agree:
Every one in six adults suffers from a mental health issue.
In England, between 4 and 10 percent of people will experience depression at some point in their life.
7.8% of people suffer from an issue which is related to both depression and anxiety.
It’s sad but it’s true; discussing your mental health can feel like a taboo topic – particularly in the workplace. You may be worried that you will appear less efficient, that you will face discrimination or that you could even lose your job. If you are struggling to focus on your work, voice your concerns and let the people who have the power make your load a little lighter to carry.
Understand What Your Right Are
Under the Employment Rights Act (1996) your employer must work along with you to try to overcome any arising mental health issue. Remember, it is in the best interests of your boss to accommodate you. It has been estimated that anxiety and depression, the most common mental health problems, make up around 20% of work days lost to sickness in Britain.
It can certainly be a challenge to talk about emotional or personal issues at work, however, putting a focus on the logistical and practical side of things can make the challenge a little easier to tackle. Try to make definite suggestions that may help you to cope better. For instance, changing to part-time hours or flexi-time, for a period of time, may give you a little space to breathe. Would working from home a few days a week take the pressure off for a while? You can make the conversation less daunting by already coming up with potential suggestions before you start.
If you feel very nervous about a potential conversation with your manager, or you have a conversation but it does not go well, you should consider talking to the HR or occupational health department of the organisation you work for – however, your first port of call should be your line manager.
Tips On Wellbeing
Mind’s research points to regular exercise, learning skills, mindfulness and having a good work-life balance all as being ways you can improve your mental health suggest the professionals at https://claritychi.com.
Other proven ways to lift your mood are socialising with colleagues and helping other people. Everyone gets benefit when the team is strong and happy – if one individual is struggling for a while, the others are able to come to their aid.