5 tips to boost mental health at work

Posted by Tilt Recruitment on May 13th, 2022

5 tips to boost mental health at work

Posted by Tilt Recruitment on May 13, 2022

This Mental Health Week feels different. We’re no longer managing a short-term crisis, we’re facing a long-term sea change in the way we approach mental health at work. And it’s severely overdue.

Anxiety and depression cost the world economy $1 trillion a year in lost productivity–yet less than half of employees say they feel their employers care about their mental or physical wellbeing.

Here are five meaningful things you can do as an employer to improve mental health in your workforce so your people can feel motivated, energised,  and positive about their work.

 

  1. Learn about mental health (and educate others)

There are plenty of learning resources out there about mental health. Share them with your team and start a company-wide discussion about what can be done to reduce stress and improve mental health in your organisation.

Inviting speakers to give talks on stress management, and giving employees the tools they need to gauge and improve their mental health can have a huge positive impact on employee retention and engagement. Mental health shouldn’t be taboo at work in 2022.

 

  1. Support healthy eating

Food has a massive impact on mental health; according to the Harvard Business Review, what we have for lunch affects our motivation, curiosity and engagement at work. It’s important to help your employees get the nutrients they need for optimal brain function.

This one is easier to do in a physical workplace because you can stock the office kitchen with healthy foods. If you’ve got people working from home, consider turning the money you’re saving on office perks into Graze boxes or some other form of healthy treats. And wherever people are, encourage them to take a full lunch break so they have time to get a proper meal rather than grabbing junk food.

 

  1. Show gratitude and recognition

Gratitude feels good–for the giver as well as the receiver. In fact, some studies have found that giving praise at work is even better for your drive and confidence than receiving it.

While showing gratitude to individuals can be as simple as a handwritten thank-you note, you can go one better by offering employees a way to show gratitude to each other. Use a rewards product to make giving recognition simple, frequent and meaningful.

Building a culture of recognition encourages team bonding, reduces stress, and creates a positive, motivating environment where employees will thrive.

 

  1. Encourage exercise

Physical activity has a measurable positive impact on mental illnesses like anxiety and depression, but a shocking 80% of adults aren’t getting their recommended daily exercise. And since a major reason for that is being too busy or tired from work, it’s on you as an employer to do what you can to solve it.

Sponsoring fitness memberships for your people is a great start, but the most meaningful thing you can do is support people in taking the time to work out during their working day. This will reduce stress and absenteeism, boost mental health and productivity, and could even improve your bottom line.

 

  1. Focus on work-life balance

Support work-life balance with flexible working hours, generous parental leave, perhaps a “no emails outside work hours” policy, and more. Don’t leave it to your employees to set boundaries around when they get to spend time on themselves.

One in three employees is chronically stressed at work, and companies that focus on mental wellbeing have less than a third of the average employee turnover. This means encouraging a healthy work-life balance isn’t an act of selfless generosity. It’s sound financial sense.

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