2020 has been quite the crazy year, to say the least. We have pushed through and have adapted to the best of our ability but there still is an uncertainty that lingers around us; and with uncertainty comes anxiety, stress and depression. 

As an employer, have you asked yourself if any of your employees are battling a mental illness? Or have you stopped to see if an employee is showing any signs of depression or is battling anxiety? If you find that you are having trouble answering these questions, don’t feel bad. These are not easy questions to answer. 

Unlike a broken arm or the common cold, the symptoms of depression, anxiety or mental illness can be easily hidden. 

Mental illness is not an easy subject to talk about but it is a huge part of many Canadians everyday life. To put that into perspective:  1 in 5 Canadians experience a mental illness annually. 

Thankfully, there are employers like you who are willing to take the extra steps to ensure your employees are happy and healthy. 

Here are 5 ways employers can support their employee’s mental health:

1. Communication is Key

Clear communication has become even more important if employees are working remotely. They may be feeling overwhelmed with their new working environment and colleges may not be able to notice that they are struggling. 

The goal is to stop treating mental illness as taboo. The way to stop this stigma is to facilitate clear communication and a welcoming environment where employees are able to speak freely.

To help keep the company’s morale high, consider doing weekly or daily video calls that promote an open conversation about your employee’s overall well-being and off-topic work banter.

On-line meeting

2. Take Advantage of Mental Health Resources

There is an abundance of mental health resources that you can provide to your employees to help with their overall well being. It is crucial that you provide a tailored solution for your employees because mental illness is not a one size fits all solution. 

Our approach at PsyMood is to offer inclusive and personal mental health services based on language and cultural background preferences. We understand that talking about mental illness isn’t easy, but talking about it in your second language or with someone who may not fully understand your cultural background is even more difficult. 

PsyMood provides customized support to your company in order to help your employees within their journey to well-being. We believe in encouraging everyone to pursue self-improvement and growth.

3. Take Mental Days Off

The days of your employees having a legitimate reason for taking a day off or requiring them to provide a doctor’s note are over. A key factor in providing a healthier workplace is allowing for employees to take a day or two off to give their mind and body the break it deserves.

If possible, you may want to take a closer look at providing your employees with flexible work hours. Allowing your employee to work when they are feeling their best will help with productivity as well.

4. Reevaluate benefits plan, policies and practices

A good idea is to also look over your current benefits plan, policies and practices. Consider offering your employees a health care spending account (HSA). This will allow them to access mental health professionals without having the burden of adding extra costs. 

Another good practice is to keep up with reminders of your policies you have around mental health. It is not enough to send it out in a mass email once a year. 

Consider adding the reminders to weekly emails, or in a Slack channel or putting up welcoming posters around your office. These small acts can make a huge impact on your employee’s mental health.

5. Decoration and Atmosphere Matters

When your employees walk into the office and they feel uplifted by their working environment, it has a great effect on their mood, productivity, and overall well-being. 

Here are some tips on how to optimize your workspace:

  • Declutter the office space. 
  • Keep your office clean and tidy
  • Add plants
  • Decorate with bright and happy colours
  • Ensure your space has access to natural light

Where you work and the mood you get when you work have a huge influence on work productivity. That’s why investing in an office revamp is to the best of your interest. Of course, during a pandemic, this may not be your top priority, but it is something to think about when you are creating your return to work plan. 

Our specialists at PsyMood are ready to help whether you already have a mental health plan in place or if you are starting from square one. Our customized support and knowledgeable team of specialists will encourage your employees to pursue in self-improvement and growth.

We take pride in how we consider every aspect of mental health and understand the importance language and cultural backgrounds have when speaking about how you are feeling. 

If you are looking for a customized mental health solution, contact us today!