How To Promote Mental Health In The Workplace

Updated on March 29, 2022

As the demand to do more with less grows in today’s business world, prioritizing employee mental health in the workplace is more important than ever. One in every four adults suffers from a diagnosable mental issue every year.

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Given these statistics, it’s likely that someone you work with is silently struggling. There are several things employers can do to foster a mentally healthy workplace and help their employees thrive. They include:

Encourage Open Communication

Employers seeking to promote mental health in the workplace should encourage employees to be open about their mental health struggles. Create a relaxed, non-judgmental environment where employees feel comfortable communicating their needs.

For instance, instead of reprimanding someone struggling with drug or alcohol addiction, offer resources and support them to get the help they need. You can enroll them at an alcohol rehab in Los Angeles or their preferred choice but assure them of job security if they need time off.

Offer Employee Assistance Programs

Another way to promote mental health in the workplace is to offer employee assistance programs (EAPs). These programs provide employees with confidential counseling, referral services, and other helpful resources to manage stress and mental health issues. When selecting an EAP provider, choose one that offers a comprehensive range of services and is accredited by a reputable organization such as the National Association of EAPs.

Provide Mental Health Training

Employers should also provide employees with mental health training. This type of training enables employees to identify early warning signs of mental health problems, understand how to manage stress effectively, and know when to seek help.

Deliver mental health training in various formats, including online courses, webinars, and in-person workshops. Additionally, consider sending managers to mental health first-aid training camps to equip them with the necessary skills needed to support employees who may be struggling.

Encourage Physical Activity

Physical activity is a great way to boost mental health. It reduces stress, improves mood, and increases energy levels. Employers can promote physical activity in the workplace by organizing group fitness classes, offering discounts at local gyms, or providing employees with standing desks. Other options are creating an on-site walking trail or allowing employees to take “walking breaks” throughout the day.

Support Flexible Work Arrangements

Flextime, telecommuting, and other flexible work arrangements promote mental health in the workplace. These arrangements give employees more control over their work-life balance, reducing stress levels.

When considering flexible work arrangements, evaluate each request on a case-by-case basis to ensure it doesn’t negatively impact productivity or workplace morale. For instance, a nursing mum may need to work from home a few days a week to take care of her child while still meeting her job responsibilities.

Create a Healthy Work Environment

When employees admit that coming to work feels like a chore, create a healthier work environment. A stress-free environment feels like a second home. Open communication, friendly co-workers, and a positive work-life balance are key.

Additionally, maintain a safe, comfortable, and clean physical environment. Add natural light and greenery, invest in ergonomic furniture, and provide healthy food options during work breaks. These small changes can make a big difference in employee mental health.

Offer Mental Health Benefits

Many employers offer health insurance benefits that include coverage for mental health services. If your business doesn’t already provide this type of coverage, add it to your benefits package. The step shows employees that you’re committed to supporting their mental health and will give them access to the resources they need to stay healthy.

Prioritize Work-Life Balance

Maintaining a healthy work-life balance is essential for mental health. Overworked employees are more likely to experience stress, anxiety, and burnout. To promote a healthy work-life balance, limit work hours, encourage employees to take vacations, and offer flexible work arrangements.

Additionally, create company policies that discourage workaholic behavior. To promote family-friendly policies, offer paid parental leave, child care benefits, and flexible scheduling options.

Support Employee Mental Health

When employees struggle with mental health issues, they need support from their employers. Offer employees resources, such as an employee assistance program or a mental health hotline.

Additionally, create a workplace culture that promotes open communication and provides employees with the resources they need to thrive. When you promote mental health in the workplace, you’re not only supporting your employees; you’re boosting your business.

The Editorial Team at Healthcare Business Today is made up of skilled healthcare writers and experts, led by our managing editor, Daniel Casciato, who has over 25 years of experience in healthcare writing. Since 1998, we have produced compelling and informative content for numerous publications, establishing ourselves as a trusted resource for health and wellness information. We offer readers access to fresh health, medicine, science, and technology developments and the latest in patient news, emphasizing how these developments affect our lives.