Mental Health Awareness Week: wellness at work

May 10th 2021

For Mental Health Awareness Week, we are creating conversations to shine a light on the importance of mental health.
This year the theme is nature and the environment. After the recent challenges we’ve all faced, many of us appreciated all that nature had to offer on our doorsteps. Now more than ever, it’s important to draw the connection between nature and our mental health. 
Department’s Community Team have each completed Mental Health Awareness training, to deliver support for members’ wellbeing in the workplace. 

Department XYZ’s Community Manager, Brian, discusses the importance of bringing mental health awareness to the forefront of our workplaces…

“Taking time out of our busy work day to focus on our mental health is extremely important. We spend the majority of our days in our places of work, but it’s not feasible or practical to suggest that the whole day is intended for work. We need to dedicate some of this time to calm our minds. Whether that be through 15 minutes of mindful desk meditation, a walk on your break or a chat with a colleague over a brew. By taking some ‘you’ time to allow your brain to switch off for a short while, you will likely be more productive when you go back to your desk and have a calmer mind – perfect for dealing with any challenges that may come your way.”

How do you look to incorporate wellness into your workspace at Department XYZ?

“Curated events focusing on wellbeing are an essential part of our programming. Department’s mission is to support members in achieving a better work life balance. Weekly yoga, meditation and the running club are great ways of building mental and physical wellness activities into the working week.”  

On the theme of nature, where would you recommend for Department’s members to get out and about on lunch to enjoy the outdoors?

“Parsonage Gardens is a great spot to sit and have lunch on a sunny day as it has an abundance of seats dotted around the park. Or to really connect with nature, why not volunteer with Spinningfields’ Little Lot, a community focused allotment @spinningfieldsallotment”

How do you incorporate nature into Department XYZ?

“Actually both of Department’s workspaces have really gone all out with planting. It helps not only to dress the workspace, but the added benefit of bringing the outdoors in, is considerable for our mental health.”

Why would you say it’s important to connect with nature?

“I could say all sorts! But the numerous studies that are around on this topic say it all. I recently came across a 2010 study by the new University of Technology, Sydney which noted a drop in stress among workers when plants were introduced to their workspace. Amazingly, there was also a 38% reduction in fatigue, which is definitely good news for anyone looking for an alternative to caffeine!”

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