Posted on 21/10/2021 by Jessica Renaglia
Did you know that 1 in 5 people experience symptoms of mental illness each year? Among these illnesses are commonly anxiety and depression.
This October for Mental Health Month, Entrée Recruitment have made a pledge to put One Foot Forward by walking in solidarity for all Australians living with mental illness.
This pledge means we are talking more about what the management of mental health looks like in the workplace. But just as importantly, we are trying as a team to incorporate more movement into our day which helps to manage our mental health.
UPDATE: As of October 31st we have walked a total of 514km and raised $1773! We are so grateful to everyone that has donated to this incredible cause.
If you understand what it’s like working in a busy corporate environment, you know how easy is to skip lunch or just eat it at your desk. Herein lies one of the biggest issues we all face; not taking our breaks or getting outside to replenish our bodies with the vitamin D we sorely need.
You’re not running out of time, you’re just not honouring it
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics 5 million of Australia’s 7.9 million full-time employees put in more than 40 hours every week, with 1.6 million racking up more than 50 working hours.
These numbers seem pretty standard if you’re working a 9-5 or similar job—by the time you leave for work it might be 7.30-8am and by the time you get home it could be 6pm or more. Doesn’t it just seem like lost time!
Then you have a long weekend and realise ‘if only I worked four days a week’!
The best way you can support yourself through a week that seems like it never ends is by honouring your lunch break—and making sure your colleagues and employer honours it too.
Our Mental Health Week
Over 11th-15th of October, Recruitment Administrator Tully Matthews coordinated a week of activities with the team that engaged positive mental health experiences with each other.
Tully shares her thoughts on the week here:
Normalising talking about mental health & promoting well-being is something I am very passionate about. This month is also a great opportunity for businesses to revisit their current policies & procedures on supporting employees who are struggling with mental health issues. This week we participated in daily activities to encouraging the team to acknowledge the importance of reducing stress-levels and paying more attention to their mental health.
Some of these activities included a group walk, team lunch and best of all ‘Warm Fuzzies’.
The team all had to write on a piece of paper a ‘warm fuzzy’—something kind about each person and pop it in a cup to read all at once or one at a time when we need a bit of cheering up!
Reading kind words from a colleague is often very validating—these words speak often to the work you do and your personal character. One of my personal favourites spoke more to the latter:
You are a legend! Love your vibe and commitment to being yourself!
Recruitment Consultant Bec shared some thoughts about what this challenge has meant to her as well on our Facebook page.
Making an impact at work
While stress is a normal part of life, prolonged or excessive job stress is exactly the kind of environment that leads to a decline in mental health.
Types of excessive job stress:
Unreasonable work demands
Low levels of control
Poor support from managers and supervisors
Role conflict or lack of role clarity
Bullying, harassment, or discrimination
Low levels of recognition and reward
If you are an employer looking for a bit of direction, or an employee in need of advocacy, there is a lot of information online to support you.
Heads Up is an educational service developed by Beyond Blue and the Mentally Healthy Workplace Alliance, giving individuals and businesses the tools to create more mentally healthy workplaces.
They have myriad of resources to help get you started:
Raising money, raising awareness
However it is you decide to participate in Mental Health Month, know that every little bit counts.
We set a small goal to fundraise for the Black Dog Institute because for us, it was important that we focus more on physical activity and constructive conversations.
This goal amount was moved several times as we had an overwhelming amount of support! At the end of October we have raised $1773 which helps to fund vital support services.
If you’d like to contribute, please head to our fundraising page with One Foot Forward here.
Ultimately, it doesn’t matter if you’re raising money or not, it’s all about raising awareness and creating more opportunities to make positive changes in life—and at work.