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Strategies for Supporting Mental Health at Work

When it comes to the workplace, mental health often takes a backseat to productivity and performance. However, addressing mental well-being is not only vital for personal health but also for maintaining a productive and positive work environment. Let's dive into understanding and managing mental health at work, debunk the myth of toxic productivity, and explore practical steps for individuals and employers alike.

Supporting Mental Health at Work - KODOBI

The Roots and Causes of Poor Mental Health in the Workplace

Poor mental health in the workplace can stem from various factors, including excessive workload, lack of support, unclear job expectations, and toxic work culture. Other external issues such as personal problems may worsen mental health.  These issues can sow seeds of stress, anxiety, and burnout, undermining both personal well-being and work efficiency.

The Impact of Mental Health at Work

Mental health issues can significantly impact work performance, leading to decreased productivity, absenteeism, and even job loss. It's essential for both employees and employers to recognize early signs of mental health struggles and address them with compassion and understanding.

Understanding Toxic Productivity

Toxic productivity is the unhealthy obsession with maximising productivity at all costs, often ignoring the signs of mental and physical exhaustion. It's a vicious cycle where self-worth is measured solely by output, leading to burnout and deteriorating mental health.

Dealing with Mental Health at Work

Mental health at work is a journey, not a destination. It requires continuous effort, understanding, and support from both individuals and organisations. Managing mental health at work begins with recognition and understanding. Acknowledging that you're facing a challenge is the first step towards seeking help. Open communication with your employer or HR department can pave the way for accommodations that support your mental health needs. Simple adjustments to your workload or environment can make a significant difference.

The 3 Rules of Mental Health

  • Self-care: 

Prioritise your well-being by engaging in activities that promote relaxation and happiness.

  • Support: 

Don't hesitate to reach out for professional help or lean on your support network.

  • Boundaries: 

Learn to say no and set limits to protect your mental health.

Communicating with Management 

When struggling mentally, it's important to communicate with your management team or HR in a way that feels comfortable to you. Be honest about your situation without feeling compelled to share more than you're comfortable with. Propose potential solutions or adjustments that could help you manage better.

Balancing Mental Health and Work

Managing mental health and work involves setting realistic goals, practising self-care, and establishing a work-life balance. Regular breaks, physical activity, and mindfulness exercises can help reduce stress and improve focus.

When Mental Health Overwhelms Your Work Ability

If your mental health significantly hinders your ability to work, consider taking a mental health day or a leave of absence to focus on recovery. Utilise employee assistance programs (EAPs) if available, and don't shy away from seeking professional help.

HSE’s Talking Toolkit

The HSE’s Talking Toolkit is a treasure trove for both employers and employees. It provides a structured approach to initiating conversations about stress and mental health in the workplace. By breaking down the process into manageable steps, it empowers managers to open up meaningful dialogues with their teams, identify stressors, and collaboratively find practical solutions. The toolkit covers a variety of scenarios, ensuring that no matter the stressor, there's a way to talk about it constructively.

Working Minds Campaign

Similarly, the Working Minds campaign by the HSE offers a comprehensive suite of resources aimed at promoting good mental health practices in the workplace. This initiative underscores the importance of preventative measures and the role of employers in creating a supportive environment. It includes practical guides, case studies, and tools designed to help businesses implement strategies that reduce work-related stress and build a culture of mental health awareness and support.

KODOBI Mental Health First Aid Service

KODOBI Mental Health First Aid service,equips employees and employers with the tools and knowledge to recognize, understand, and help those experiencing mental health issues. This service not only benefits individuals by providing them with immediate support and guidance but also fosters a workplace culture that values and prioritises mental well-being. By investing in mental health first aid, employers can see a reduction in absenteeism, an increase in productivity, and, most importantly, a happier and healthier workforce.

Let's make mental well-being a standard part of workplace health and safety.


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