World Mental Health Day – Good Mental Health for All: Let’s Make it a Reality
We all feel stressed, anxious, have low mood or suffer from sleep problems from time to time. Mental health affects us all. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of looking after ourselves. New research reveals the pandemic had a negative impact on the wellbeing of nearly half (49%) of adults in England, with a higher reported impact on ethnic minorities groups (55%). It has also highlighted the effects of inequality on health outcomes. People from different ethnical and racial backgrounds, with different sexual orientation or on lower income are more susceptible to poor mental health. Sadly, more than a third (34%) said they did not know what to do to improve their wellbeing because they felt overwhelmed, or they didn’t know where to start.
World Mental Health Day
Employers play a crucial role in helping change this scenario and support good mental health for all. For World Mental Health Day 2021, you can invite your workforce to reflect on how they have been managing their wellbeing and stress levels in the last 18 months, and encourage your staff to find what works for them to care for their mental health. After all, everyone is different and reacts differently to life-challenges.
Every Mind Matters
When it comes to taking care of our mental health, having a plan is a great first step. The new NHS Every Mind Matters campaign, with the moto ‘What works for me’, brings a very simple and useful tool that you could promote in your workplace this October.
By answering 5 quick questions in the Mind Plan Quiz, your staff get a free and personalised plan with tailored tips to help them deal with stress and anxiety, improve their sleep and boost their mood to feel more in control. The plan suggests a list of simple actions that are most likely to make a difference with the issues your employees have rated as being most important to them. And if something doesn’t work for them, it can be swapped for a different action.
Good mental health helps us at work, at home and in the way we feel about ourselves. It helps us feel more relaxed and enjoy our lives more. Research shows that a fifth of UK adults (22%) took up a new hobby such as enjoying nature (46%), brisk walks (41%), gardening (34%) and cooking (33%) to help them manage their mental health during the pandemic. Here are some other tips from Every Mind Matters that we can all try, and you can share with your employees this month:
- Reframe your thoughts: We might develop patterns of thoughts that are unhelpful. This affects the way we feel and can lead to unhelpful actions. Recognise, challenge and replace unhelpful thoughts.
- Be in the present: We can get caught up in worrying about the future or ruminating on the past. Taking time to notice our body sensations, our thoughts and feelings, and the world around us can help us gain a clearer perspective.
- Get good sleep: Good-quality sleep can make a big difference to how we feel. There are lots of things that can help us develop a healthy sleeping routine, like switching off and having some winding down time before bed.
- Connect with others: Spending quality time with friends or family, talking to someone about how we are feeling or finding ways to help others can make us feel better. This can be in person, online or over the phone.
- Live a healthy life: Our mental health goes hand-in-hand with our physical health. Being active, enjoying the outdoors and having a balanced diet can all help to boost our mood. Also, binning bad habits like smoking, and cutting down on alcohol and caffeine can have a positive effect too.
- Do something for yourself: It’s important to find the time to do enjoyable activities for ourselves. This might be your favourite hobby, learning something new or simply taking time to relax. Figuring out what hobbies or activities make us happy can help boost our mood, lower stress, and build confidence.
Find out more on Every Mind Matters website and access the Mind Quiz and other resources. The website has been continuously updated to support everyone during the pandemic and includes tips on how to deal with change, cope with money worries and job uncertainty. Share with us at email@example.com what you have planned for World Mental Health Day.
Let’s make good mental health a reality for all!