Mental health is about feeling good about yourself and your life and about coping well in everyday situations. The things you do to keep your body in good health, such as being physically active, eating healthily and only drinking moderate amounts of alcohol, are also good for your mental health. It is just as important to stay mentally healthy as it is to stay physically healthy.
Print, post and stick to it
The following 5 tips from Kim Steen Nielsen can help you strengthen your mental health. Print them and keep them in a visible place – at home or at work. If you do, you ensure that the good intentions are not forgotten. Also remember that change takes time. Decide what you want to focus on, mark it in the sheet and expand as the new habits become an integrated part of your life.
Work and private life
Your mental health is affected by circumstances both at work and outside work. Your welfare at work is important, since a positive mental working environment makes it easier to function at work, even if your private affairs are not at their optimum. This means that it can be a good idea to be mindful of what creates workplace well-being and how you can make your own contribution to mental health at work.
Your mental health at work
When you feel well at work, the risk of being affected by stress and having to take time off due to illness is reduced. You, too, can help to ensure your workplace well-being.
As an employee it is important, for example, to be mindful of your own condition, to seek out knowledge, help or support if you find that workplace well-being is an issue. You will find some good advice on what you can do in the following.
You will feel good when you experience that you can deliver good quality results for your tasks – and when at the same time you use your skills, are able to handle work pressures and participate in social relations at work.
What is required for you to feel good at work may change over time. You may have periods of time where you feel you have extra capacity and other times when you feel under pressure. It may help prevent you from getting worn down if you and your manager regularly discuss how you can successfully perform your tasks with the resources and skills available to you.
If something at work or in your private life makes it difficult for you to perform at work, it is important that you tell your manager how this affects your ability to perform. You may be able to adjust your working conditions for a period of time. This will often enable you to cope with the challenges you are facing.
This means that you should pay attention to how you are feeling and not be afraid to share if you are going through a difficult time. It also requires you to trust that your place of work will be open to what you say.
If you are concerned about how your manager will react, or if you find it difficult to describe what is bothering you, it could be a good idea to first talk it over with a colleague whom you trust.
It may help you enjoy your work more if you speak up when you feel under pressure in different situations:
- If you find a lack of balance between job requirements and your resources. This can be due to workload and time pressure or unclear expectations. You may also lack certain skills, or maybe you do not have sufficient influence on your tasks at work.
- If any issues at the workplace stress you or make you insecure and less happy.
- If you feel persistent symptoms of stress, anxiety or depression.
- If you need assistance with prioritising your tasks. When you are under pressure, it is easy to lose oversight.
Your manager can help you, and you can identify solutions together during periods when you are not happy at work or under pressure.
If you think that you are unable to discuss your job challenges with your manager, maybe you can begin by talking with a trusted colleague who can help you get through difficult situations. Or maybe you have an employee or working environment representative that you can talk to. You can also contact your trade union.