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mental health awareness

Mental health awareness month: 5 tips to activate your office

May 15, 2024

May is Mental Health Awareness Month, an opportunity to raise awareness and reduce stigma surrounding mental health issues in the workplace.

As an HR representative or benefits decision-maker, you have a responsibility to support your employees’ mental health wellbeing. But what can your employees do to raise mental health awareness in the office, especially during Mental Health Awareness Month? Let’s explore some ideas and activities you can implement in office this May!

Organize mental health activities

Employees can organize mental health activities in the office to raise awareness and reduce stigma. This could include lunch-and-learns on mental health topics, yoga and meditation sessions, or mental health first aid training. Encouraging participation in these activities can help employees learn about mental health, reduce stress, and build supportive relationships with their colleagues. That’s why it’s just important to make sure these activities are integrated into the workday and there’s buy-in across leadership for anyone to take part, no matter what department they’re in.

Invite employees to start the conversation

One of the most important steps in raising mental health awareness is to start the conversation. Employees can initiate discussions about mental health by sharing their own experiences or asking others how they’re doing. One way to spark conversation is through weekly discussions around an open-ended topic throughout May covering mental health. Creating a safe and supportive environment where people feel comfortable talking about their mental health is crucial to breaking down stigma and encouraging help-seeking behaviors. Watch our Benefits Buzz podcast episode below to learn more about the value of these conversations and how you can help remove any stigma around mental health in your office. 

Sharing resources

There are many resources available to help people learn more about mental health and how to support themselves and others. Consider posting a bulletin board in-office dedicated to sharing mental health resources. Common resources include Employee Assistance Program (EAPs) or mental health hotlines. Make sure that your colleagues know that they can turn to help through these resources if they need support. 

Encourage self-care

Encourage your colleagues to prioritize their own mental health by practicing self-care by yourself and with colleagues. Throughout the month of May, encourage you and your peers to: 

  • Take self-care breaks
  • Go for a walk with colleagues during lunch
  • Take a mental-health day when needed 

To further support these initiatives consider providing quiet spaces, meditation rooms, or even a relaxation room. By normalizing self-care, you can help reduce the stigma around taking care of one’s mental health. 

Address workplace stressors

Workplace stress can have a significant impact on mental health. If you notice that certain workplace stressors are contributing to poor mental health, speak up and advocate for change. Encourage colleagues to voice concerns with open dialogue, promoting inclusivity and openness. Some topics involving addressing these issues can include: 

  • Employee workload 
  • Communication 
  • Leadership 

Want to learn more about how you can support your employees? Check out our employee wellness guide below!

The information in this blog post is for educational purposes only. It is not legal or tax advice. For legal or tax advice, you should consult your own legal counsel, tax and investment advisers. 

WEX receives compensation from some of the merchants identified in its blog posts. By linking to these products, WEX is not endorsing these products.

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