Apr, 2020

How to Help Colleagues Struggling with Mental Health

How to Help Colleagues Struggling with Mental HealthCaring for one’s mental health is just as important as caring for physical health. Mental health is integral in living a well-balanced and healthy life. If your mental health is in good condition, your physical, social and emotional health will follow.


The sad news is that some people are struggling with mental health issues and these people are just actually around you, working with you. Not many people are aware of this but 1 out of 10 employees take sick days off because they suffer from a mental health problem, according to TotalJobs.

So what will you do if you have a colleague struggling with their mental health? How are you going to help and support them?

Encourage them to share and talk
People who suffer from mental health issues, no matter how mild these issues may be, are typically embarrassed to talk about what they’re going through. However, it’s not going to make things better if they keep these problems to themselves.

One way to help a colleague who has a problem with their mental health is to encourage them to talk. Let them feel you are a friend and that you’re willing to lend a listening ear, with an open mind and no judgment. If they’re not ready to talk, it’s okay. What’s important is you made them feel you’ll be there when they need someone to talk to.

Suggest coping strategies
Some of the reasons behind some people’s mental health issues are related to work. Some are because they’re extremely stressed or burnt out. In cases like this, you can help your colleague cope with what they’re going through by giving them suggestions on the coping strategies that work for you, too.

If doing exercise or yoga is working for you, you may suggest it to your colleague. If it’s engaging in a new hobby like cooking or getting involved in sports, you may suggest it, too. Invite them to an activity you’re currently involved in to make them feel more interested.

Don’t make them feel they’re singled out
One of the reasons why people with mental issues aren’t comfortable opening up to other people is because there is still a stigma around these issues. So if you know somebody struggling with their mental health, make sure they don’t feel they’re any different.

Make the discussion around mental health feel like a normal conversation. Don’t make your colleague feel as if it’s a taboo or a sensitive thing that shouldn’t be talked about. It’s okay to have an open and honest conversation about it.

Learn more about mental health
Not too many people understand what mental health is and the problems associated with it. This is why we often underestimate and neglect people who actually have serious mental health problems. To better help someone struggling with these issues, it would be a good idea if you go a little out of your way to learn more about mental health. You might just find something that may help your colleague who may feel overwhelmed.

Mental health problems aren’t something that should be taken lightly. So if you know someone from work who is struggling with their mental health, know that there are ways you can support them to maintain their productivity at work and better their life as a whole.

Read 341 times Last modified on Saturday, 23 May 2020 01:47
Alan Carniol

Alan is the creator of Interview Success Formula, a training program that has helped more than 80,000 job seekers to ace their interviews and land the jobs they deserve. Interviewers love asking curveball questions to weed out job seekers. But the truth is, most of these questions are asking about a few key areas. Learn more about how to outsmart tough interviewers by watching this video.