This week saw thousands of businesses participating in discussion and raising awareness for World Mental Health Day. Mental health is a vital issue in the modern workplace. It’s estimated that 39% of the sick days taken by employees in the UK are due to mental health issues, with 11.7m working days lost due to work-related stress, depression, and anxiety in 2015/16.
Here at Love Success, London’s leading PA recruitment agency, we recognise how valuable it is to speak up about mental health. We recruit for many positions that involve prioritising someone else’s needs, whether it’s a personal assistant role or an office support job. These positions are often demanding, with long hours and plenty of pressure—especially those top London PA jobs—so it’s vital for all workers to take care of their mental health.
Here are some practical self-care tips that are particularly important for those in personal assistant or executive assistant jobs—to help make good mental health a priority.
Try to stay active
Have you ever noticed that you seem to have less energy on the days you spend chained to your desk than the days when you’re zipping around the office? Working in an office support job where you’re mostly sedentary can have a big impact on your mental health. A study from the University of Tasmania found that employees who sit for more than six hours each day were more likely to develop symptoms of anxiety and depression than those who sat for just three hours. Try to include some form of activity in your day, even if it’s just stretching at your desk!
Keep an ongoing to-do list
One of the reasons why so many people experience stress in the workplace is because they can’t keep track of the different tasks they have to do. This can result in panic and anxiety—and may even lead to you putting off starting the tasks in the first place. Keeping a simple to-do list breaks down your tasks to make them appear more manageable, whether you’re in a challenging PA role or a fast-paced receptionist job. You might find that looking at your list is far less stressful than trying to keep track of the tasks fighting for attention in your headspace.
Use your commute wisely
If you have a long commute to work in the mornings, try to use it as some much-needed “me time”. Don’t succumb to the pressure to check your emails or get a head start on the day’s work. This can create a feeling of being “always on”, which then leads to burnout, both physically and mentally. If you commute by public transport, use the time to read a good book or meditate. If you drive to work, catch up on a good podcast or listen to your favourite playlist. Consider cycling or walking at least part of your journey a few times per week to get that all-important physical activity in to ensure your office job is balanced with exercise too.
Talk about it
As we’ve seen this week with the outpouring of discussion for World Mental Health Day, there’s never been a better time to talk about your mental health. Whether that means sharing your problem with your colleagues, taking it to your boss, or even participating in counselling or therapy, it’s vital to open up. Employers are now discovering how important it is to support the mental health of their staff. Discussing your feelings and admitting you need help is not a sign of weakness—it’s an encouraging sign that you’re ready to do what it takes to be on top form in the workplace.
For more information about Love Success, tips on how to stay in top form, and the latest PA jobs across the capital, visit the website today.
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