Employers can create conditions that are more supportive of mental health by taking simple steps like allowing workers to take breaks where socializing is permitted.While it may seem initially counter-intuitive, studies show that in the long run, policies like these can lead to a more productive workplace. Here are a few tips workers can use to stay mentally healthy at work:
- Form friendships in the workplace. A positive relationship with even a single colleague can make a big difference in combating loneliness and depression. A friend at your office could provide an ear when you really need to release some steam or just take a mental break from an intense task.
- That said, make a distinction between work and leisure, and make time for social activities outside the workplace. If at all possible, don’t skip holiday breaks. Take your vacation time; getting away from work for a few days at a time often revitalizes, and gives you a better perspective on things.
- Take care of your health by getting enough sleep and exercise. Sleep is your brain’s downtime. Research shows that during sleep, your brain uses the opportunity to process thoughts and information that it receives during your waking hours—which is why you often think better and more clearly after a good night’s rest. Meanwhile, regular exercise helps you produce and release hormones that improve your sense of well-being, plus it boosts blood supply to the brain and other important organs.