Supporting mental health while working from home

Supporting mental health while working from home - Knowledge Factory

Paying attention to, and supporting, workplace mental health has never been more important. With many people now working from home due to the COVID-19 outbreak, and others working diligently on the front line, it is crucial that we look after each other, and ourselves.

Time to talk

We celebrated Time to Talk Day back in February, with a number of events across our sites encouraging our teams to talk, and reducing the stigma surrounding mental health. While we can’t replicate those activities due to the current restrictions on face-to-face socialisation, there are still ways to reach out to one another and stay well while working from home. Here are some small, simple steps that you can take to look after yourself and make your workplace mentally healthier.

Have a routine

Even when working from home, having a routine is valuable, as it gives your day structure and helps you to feel in control and cope with change. This means that you can make room for your most important tasks and develop healthy habits, which will ultimately reduce stress levels.

Stay connected

Taking the time to talk to your friends, family and co-workers is incredibly important. Loneliness is an unpleasant emotion that unfortunately can be quite common, and reaching out to others and maintaining these vital connections can help boost mood, and ensure that people feel supported, even when times are tough. Consider a virtual coffee break with colleagues, or even just a good old-fashioned phone call.

Keep physically active

Exercise is linked to improving your general health in terms of many diseases, such as type 2 diabetes, but there are also huge benefits for mental wellbeing and quality of life. People who exercise regularly claim to feel more energetic throughout the day, sleep better at night, and feel more positive about themselves and their lives. It doesn’t have to be anything strenuous – even just adding some gentle stretches into your daily routine when you wake up, or a quick yoga session during a lunch break, can significantly boost your mood and reduce stress.

 

These are just a few ideas to keep well at work, but there is a large support network online with further suggestions to stay healthy and ensure that yourself and others are safe. Mental health is important, and sharing our thoughts and feelings with those around us – even over a voice call – encourages connectivity and positivity, and can significantly improve wellbeing.