In one way or another, our fundamental way of living has changed. It is now most critical to equally prioritize not only our physical but mental health.
In light of the global challenges, this year’s World Mental Health Day will perhaps be the one which will attract the most attention. The sudden, dramatic, and far-reaching effects of the pandemic resulting in social distancing, isolation, loneliness, stress-inducing social media, unpredictable furlough or maybe the loss of a loved one, have posed significant challenges to our mental health. As human beings we may have tried to prioritise our happiness and wellbeing throughout the years. It is unfortunate though that it took a pandemic to truly highlight the value and importance of staying well – not only physically, but also mentally and spiritually.
Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, the CIPD & Simply Health 2020 survey found that, “nearly two-fifths (37%) of the respondents have seen an increase in stress-related absence over the last year, while three-fifths (60%) report an increase in common mental health conditions”. These results are only anticipated to worsen.
As lockdown eases, the furlough scheme begins to wind down and people re-enter a new working landscape, here are some ideas on how you can maintain a healthy mindset and protect your mental health.
- Stay connected
Connectivity can act as a source of giving and receiving support in the face of adversity. In times like this, people may need someone to either rely on, look up to or seek support from. Hence, it is important to invest in building and maintaining positive, meaningful relationships with others as well as with the community.
- Practice Gratitude
According to Laurie Santos, a Professor of Psychology at Yale University, one of the key elements that can promote happiness and wellbeing within us is being grateful. A simple act such as counting our blessings can even lead to lower stress levels. An easy activity to start practicing gratitude is keeping a journal and writing down the things for which to be grateful daily.
- Be kind to yourself and to others
Returning to work is not simple for many people. Remember the whirlpool of emotions you may have experienced at the beginning of the pandemic? Well, returning to work can also stir up similar emotions. Along with the seasons, many things have changed in just a short period of time. Countless of workplaces have been reshaped, whether that is in terms of staff or the physical workplace area. Hence, be kind to yourself but to others as well. Take a moment to try to understand your feelings and ultimately choose the coping strategy that works for you to help adjust to the new normal.
Get in touch with us to find out more tips on how you can protect and look after your mental health at work.