Understanding those struggling with mental health issues is integral to building a business that can promote equal opportunities. In this article, we consider this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week theme, and how to avoid stress and friction in the workplace. We also talk about how you can help those who are suffering from mental health issues to create a comfortable workplace that promotes balance and wellbeing.
The average British employee will work for 34 hours and 26 minutes a week, making it extremely important to create a working environment which promotes health and wellbeing. World WellBeing Week starts on June 24th this year, so let’s endeavour to change for the better together.
This Year’s Theme – Body Image
Mental Health Awareness Week has been running since 2001 and every year brings a different aspect of mental health issues to the centre of the public’s attention. Most people go through a phase of struggling with body image at some point in their lives, especially teenagers, but body image problems aren’t felt by teenagers alone.
In both the UK and Australia, in 2016, only 20 per cent of women between the ages of 10 and 60 admitted to having high self-esteem about how they looked. If you think that body image isn’t important to the workforce, then we’re asking you to think again; some of those in the 80% with low self-esteem even confessed to skipping job interviews because they felt they had a poor body image.
Managing Stress in the Workplace
While Mental Health Awareness Week this year was focused on improving conceptions about body image, the underlying thread of every campaign is that stress can be deadly and often leads to other mental health issues, including body image problems which in turn can lead to eating disorders and poor physical health.
It is important to create a working environment where your staff can thrive and you can do this by targeting those stresses which are distracting them from both feeling well and performing at their best. If you agree that working whilst suffering from physical pain leads to an impaired performance, then you should agree that forcing body image standards that are mentally unhealthy need to be overturned. This may include catering for disabled staff and clients in your establishment by reconsidering the facilities that you have available to encourage the notion that all bodies are welcomed.
Along with World Wellbeing Day on June 22nd, World WellBeing Week calls for businesses and individuals to take a more critical stance regarding their social, physical, emotional, financial and environmental wellbeing. You can show that you value your employees by pursuing these goals, and – if you succeed – you may even find yourself taking part in the annual WellBeing Festival in the future as an award holder of the ‘Leaders in Wellbeing’ ceremony.
Other Ideas for Managing Mental Health
If you are questioning what you can do to help those struggling with mental health issues, then you should first know that even those who are diagnosed with the same problem could have very different experiences and symptoms. This means that it is most important to stay open to new ideas when trying to provide support; what works for one may not work for another.
Our focus on improving office environments and reducing stress in the workplace means that we have a fair few general ideas that could help to create at least the best physical environment to nurture workers and improve wellbeing. Bear in mind that not all the following ideas will suit everyone, but perhaps everyone will find one idea that appeals to them:
It is a well-known fact that staying in contact with the natural world can help to improve emotional stability. Modern humans suffer from a lack of connection with nature, but you can put that right by bringing nature into your place of work.
The concept of biophilic design is about mindfully connecting humans to nature in the build environment, by including natural daylighting, by adding plants to your place of work, and including biomorphic design and furnishings which mimic nature. Many studies have proved that this design practice has the added benefits of improving creativity and productivity.
If you’re interested in reading more about Biophilia, you can read our blog, Biophilia – What is it and why is it important?
We recently wrote a blog about how Forest Bathing can really help individuals to escape from their daily stresses. You could encourage your employees to engage in this technique to decrease building stress, increase balance and improve focus at work.
If your office is located near a green space, like a park, you could encourage staff to go for a walk there during breaks to cool off and take in the beautiful nature surrounding them.
Many modern businesses offer their staff perks for staying with the company, and you can show that you care about your staff by providing them with useful perks that encourage good health. Mental and physical health are more closely linked than people think; for example, those struggling with depression often find it difficult to get out and exercise, which can eventually lead to poor self-care routines, which can further feed feelings of depression and isolation.
By supplying your staff with healthy perks like gym memberships and healthy office snacks, you are encouraging your staff to take care of themselves, and this could improve their confidence in both their general health as well as their body image.
How We Can Improve Your Office Space with Plants and Flowers
Planteria aim to make it as easy as possible to include plants and flowers into workspace. We can help you with design ideas, carry out the installation and then take care of your plants, to create an office that is formal yet comfortable, stylish as well as productive. Office flowers make a beautiful first impression for your reception area and set the tone that this is an organisation that cares about its people and their wellbeing. We can consider the layout of your office to help you to find the perfect plants for your office environment, whether that’s spacious or small, lacking in natural light or bright and sunny. We have also written about other ways to Reduce Work-Related Stress which you can read about on our blog.
Planteria’s Success with Mount Media
Impress both your employees and your clients by working with us to create somewhere stunning, healthier and more productive, and keep coming back to our blog to read the latest news and tips about how to craft the best office environments – physically, mentally and socially. Working with us is a stress-free journey towards improving your business.