The good news: More and more professionals are coming out about their mental health problems.
The bad news: Many professionals still face the stigma of mental health and hide their problems out of fear of losing their jobs or destroying their professional image and advancement.
The best thing you can do to stomp out the stigma is to speak out. If you are not in a job that requires legal disclosure of a mental health condition, like an airline pilot or police officer, you may discover plenty of advantages in confiding in your colleagues or manager about your mental health. That said, you also need to feel secure and safe, so your best bet may be to first weigh the pros and cons of your personal situation.
Whether or not you disclose your mental health, however, there are steps you can take to safeguard your mental health in the workplace. Here are a few:
- Be honest with yourself. Think carefully about your own needs and how you can set healthy boundaries. For example, do you need to exercise before work? Go out for a lunchtime walk or make time to meditate at your desk? Can you avoid taking work home? Are you able to commit to leaving on time several days a week?
- Set manageable goals. Stress is the enemy and will only worsen any mental health symptoms, so be realistic about what you can (and can’t do) without getting too stressed out. Try making a to-do list ranked in order of most to least important tasks. And ask for help when necessary.
- Build in rewards. Managing your mental health and your career is challenging, so give yourself credit for both big and small accomplishments. Of course, make your rewards healthy ones, like a five-minute break or walk to the coffee shop.
Getting Help for Depression and Addiction
Using alcohol or drugs as a coping mechanism for depression is a dangerous path – and one that can quickly lead to dependence. Providence Treatment prides itself on being a supportive and effective rehab for professionals. To learn more, call (866) 622-6211.