Mental Health at Work – 3 Approaches to Manage the Risk

As the world of work continuously changes, the risk factors once confronted by businesses are now replaced by risk factors that are not immediately obvious. There are no orange flags, flashing lights or yellow stripes associated with the emerging tsunami of psychosocial risk factors on the horizon. 

Mitigating these emerging risks is not going to be easy as the elements within this cluster of risks are at times hard to identify and even harder to quantify. However, unless employers focus their resources on managing these risks it will cost the business money and production. Tragically it could also cost lives and the business itself may ultimately struggle to survive. 

Over the last few years Optimum has been working with businesses to help them mitigate the risks associate with mental health. Here are some programs and tips that we hope you find insightful. 

The Peer Support Program. A program that accepts that managing mental health needs as many factors aligned as possible. Through the Program we identify 5 ways to support your struggling mate at work  

  • Always look, listen and talk to your mate.  
  • Respond to your mate, not react to the situation.  
  • Always show respect, empathy and be genuine.  
  • Listen, validate and explore the options available with your mate.  
  • Do not try and problem solve but be supportive. Ask questions.  

Bonus: Remind your mate – 75% of those seeking help improve notably 

Self-Care Approach. The groups we have been working with have identified 6 critical factors to promote their own physical, psychological and emotional health.  

  • How well am I sleeping?  
  • How well am I eating? 
  • How active am I?  
  • How well I am managing my stress?  
  • Is the way I am thinking helping me?  
  • Is the quality of my relationships supporting me?  

The Pit Crew. It is accepted that one cannot manage all aspects of your mental health on your own. Support will be needed from time to time. An initiative that we have used, and think is worth sharing with you is – create your own…Pit Crew. We recommend five (5) members in the Pit Crew as it appears to be an optimal number. The Pit Crew is your “go to group” for support.  

Members could be - 

  • Best mate  
  • Family member  
  • General Practitioner  
  • Work Colleague  
  • Your partner  

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