Five key skills for improving mental health at work

20 Sep 2019

You can’t put a plaster on a panic attack.

We all have mental health and various ways to manage our wellbeing, but sometimes the environment and outside circumstances can lead us to lose our balance.

We all know how to support colleagues’ physical health – slips, trips and falls, CPR, the recovery position.

After a mental health crisis occurs, it’s common to hear people say, “I didn’t see it coming,” or “I knew something was wrong, but I didn’t know how to talk about it.”

So what would you to do if a colleague was depressed, anxious or stressed?

After all, you can’t put a plaster on a panic attack.

The five key skills.

There are five key skills that you need to develop if you want to help champion good mental health at work. Mental Health professionals use the acronym AGLEE, which stands for:

Assess the situation
Listen non-judgmentally
Give reassurance and information
Encourage self-help
Encourage professional help

Employers support

Upskilling you and your team.

You don’t need to be a mental health professional to help your colleagues through difficult times – you could join a growing community of people championing good mental health at work by becoming a mental health first aider.

Just like a physical first aider doesn’t need to be a doctor or nurse anyone can learn the skills needed to be mental health first aider.

And, just as physical first aid is about in order to provide an effective first response and to call for further assistance, mental health first aid is all about recognising the signs of trouble, understanding a colleague’s needs, and helping signpost them to further help.

Join a growing community.

UK business are training a record number of mental health first aiders, and the numbers look set to grow further.

As stigma surrounding mental health issues starts to erode, more and more businesses, large and small, are realising that, as well being The Right Thing To Do, that taking proactive measure to help their staff feel empowered to talk about and take-action on poor mental health has a positive effect on staff retention, absenteeism, productivity and, ultimately the bottom-line.

Taking the first steps.

Oxford CBT runs a number of mental health first aid courses that can help your colleagues to understanding the realities of mental health; to recognise the signs of trouble; and to learning effective intervention.

Get in touch to find out how we can help.