3 Common Mental Health Challenges in the Workplace

The high prevalence of mental health issues among workers in the U.S. is worrying. A 2020 survey revealed that 76% of people across all organizational levels experienced some form of mental health distress. Understanding the probable causes behind this distress presents an opportunity to learn how to avoid them and protect yourself. It would help to adopt work-life balance techniques to help you through any mental health challenges in your own workplace.

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Heavy workload and inflexible work hours

According to the American Psychological Association, 43% of workers attribute stress to heavy workloads. A heavy workload ultimately means doing a lot in very few hours and sometimes with fewer resources. Unfortunately, those who fail to devise healthy coping mechanisms experience one form of a mental health problem or another. The average work schedule for an employee in the country is 8 to 9 hours. In some cases, it extends to 10 to 12 hours. Within the set period, an employee may be responsible for several tasks or projects that tire them out. 

Besides their physical fatigue, their mental health is put under tremendous strain. Prolonged exposure to heavy workloads raises cortisol levels in the body. In the long run, workers may experience mood disorders and decreased cognitive flexibility. With this in mind, you must take measures to manage the heavy workload you deal with daily.

If you can, determine your priorities, schedule tasks, and take breaks during the day. That said, don’t discount the idea of looking elsewhere for work. Sometimes the stressors of a work environment are entirely outside your control and the only healthy solution is to leave that environment for a better one.

Conflicts with colleagues and bosses

A Paychex survey has revealed that 54% of line managers have strained working relationships with their team members. The report also indicated that 20% of team leaders manage the same way. At the workplace, a vital element needed is cohesion and harmony among employees. They are driving forces that enhance cooperation and tolerance in the workplace. Without that, professional relationships have an increased chance of spiraling out of control. That also increases the risk of mental health issues among employees. There is heightened anxiety leading to depression, aggression, and other mood disorders. 

Nobody likes to go to work knowing they will be in contact with a colleague they have problems with. A solution will be to find help or adopt an open-communication policy. This can help you address workplace issues when they come up, ultimately reducing the chances of harboring animosity within. Better yet, you can seek psychological help, guidance, and counseling to learn how to deal with the stressors.

Employee burnout

More than half of U.S. workers experience burnout, which is one reason mental health issues are increasing among employees. Additionally, 84% of millennials feel varying degrees of burnout in their workplaces. As a result, depression and anxiety disorders are common mental health problems people experiencing burnout face.

One way to face it head-on is to evaluate your options and determine whether a job change is best for you. When you fail to resolve burnout, you increase the chances of feeling demotivated or apathetic about your current job.

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