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Wellness Tips To Improve Your Mental Health At Work

How concerned are you about your mental health? Do you get lost between deadlines and skipped mid-day breaks? Improve your mental health at work by following these research-backed tips.

By Namami
05 Jan 2023

It's been a tough couple of years. The ongoing strains of an increasingly demanding work culture, on top of daily home-life duties and current events, have had a significant negative impact on many people's mental health and well-being.

According to a 2022 study titled Mental Health and Well-being In The Workplace by Deloitte, “Mental health-related challenges are not new to the Indian workforce, but these have come to the forefront in light of COVID-19, and a younger workforce that is open to speaking about their individual well-being.”

The study further found, “Not only is the number of impacted employees large, the degree of the challenge is also high, accentuated by performance-oriented cultures anchored in long and demanding work schedules, economic uncertainty, and peer comparison (especially on social media platforms).”


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Workplace culture can sometimes take a toll on your mental health. Protecting your mental health at work can help you be emotionally aware, happier and perform better.


Related Story: How to Be More Mindful At Work


Why Is Your Mental Health Important?

According to the 2022 factsheet titled Mental Health at Work by World Health Organisation, “Without effective support, mental disorders and other mental health conditions can affect a person's confidence and identity at work, capacity to work productively, absences and the ease with which to retain or gain work. Twelve billion working days are lost every year to depression and anxiety alone.”


Related story: How To Have A Healthy Argument At Work


Ways To Improve Your Mental Health At Work

When you ignore your mental health, you are risking your physical and mental well-being. Hare some simple wellness tips to practice mental health awareness on your own in the workplace:

1. Speak Your Mind And Share Your Point Of View

As an employee, communicating is an important factor in establishing yourself as someone who is honest, has good ideas, can grab opportunities and cement your place in the team. You are with the organisation because they recognise your talents. Hence, speaking up about your viewpoints will further strengthen it and help you feel more confident about yourself.


2. Practice Controlled Breathing Techniques

According to a 2017 study by Frontiers in Psychology, “Breathwork refers to deep, diaphragmatic breathing or belly breathing, which research suggests may trigger relaxation responses in the body.” Breathing reduces stress and enhances our physical, spiritual, and mental health. Taking deep breaths when facing anxiety and stress at work will make sure you calm down.


3. Bring In Plants

According to a 2019 study by the American Society of Horticulture Science, “Greenery and fresh oxygen from plants help our mood and brain function optimally at work. People who have a small plant on their desk have lower stress, anxiety, and depression than those who don’t.”


4. Eat Nutrient Rich Food

A 2017 study in a journal titled BMC Medicine by BioMed Central (UK) found, “Depression decreases when met with a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, omega-3 fatty acids, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fats. Even better if you can get nuts, natural juice, and peanut butter whole-grain crackers from the office break room or vending machine.”


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How To Improve An Employee's Mental Health?

Several ways to promote mental health in the workplace can help your employees cope with stress and anxiety:

1. Install Onsite Feedback Facilities

Listening to your employees’ feedback will benefit your team positively. Employees’ feedback facilities are an essential mechanism to hear them out and drive improvements.


2. Connect With Your Team Weekly

Joining the conversation is crucial. When there are communication gaps due to hierarchical issues between teammates, it can create unwanted friction between co-workers.

According to a 2015 research paper titled Study of Internal Communication Gap, by Rajesh Faldu of Vadhar Institute of Management Studies (India), “ Lack of communication within an organisation can decrease productivity, lower morale and be the cause of serious workplace issues. Some of the employees also feel a lack of communication as their voice is not heard.”


3. Offer Flexibility When Required

Being flexible is critical to promoting mental wellness at work. According to a 2021 study titled The Future Of Work: Productive Anywhere by Accenture, “83% of workers in our study said a hybrid model would be optimal. The future of work will be characterised by complexity and managing differences.”

With so many hours a day it is common to feel spread out between work and personal lives. The meaning of being flexible can vary with different employees. Offering flexibility accordingly will ensure lower level of burnouts and stress within your team.


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With mental well-being awareness becoming a serious topic these days, now is a more critical time than ever to create an open culture that understands and values mental health at work.


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