As we enter a holiday fraught with more stresses and pressure than ever before, seasonal depression—combined with anxieties related to the COVID pandemic—is about to take on a new dimension.
Don’t assume that your workers have it all under control. They may not even be aware of how the holidays and the pandemic are affecting them; and even those who are aware may not know what to do about it. According to one survey:
- 11% of employees have no idea what mental health supports/services their company offers.
- 42% say their employer offers no support or programs dealing with mental health.
- Only about half (47%) of workers say their company has mental health-related benefits or programs.
Here are a few steps you can take to help:
- Remind employees about mental health-related benefits. Encourage them to make use of the organization’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP).
- Create an atmosphere where employees can speak openly to managers or supervisors about their feelings and their mental health needs. Train managers to recognize when someone has a problem and what to do about it. Open communication will help reduce the stigma around mental health.
- Create a culture of caring in the organization. Use pet and music programs/activities to bring people comfort and ease their anxieties. Reach out to employees and find out how you can help boost morale and spirits during the holidays. Encourage and enable physical activity and exercise.