Time to Change are asking employers to make a point of taking five minutes on 4th February to talk about mental health.
Last year I focused on the stigma that seems to go hand in hand with any discussion around mental health, even though we all have mental health, be it good or bad, just as we all have physical health.
Over the last few months I have found myself working with people who have had suicidal thoughts, and I have been hearing about others who have taken their own lives; without fail they have all been men.
When I talk about the stigma around discussing mental health I invariably take a female perspective, and yet I understand that men find it so much harder than women to talk about mental wellbeing.
This is a worrying issue, the Samaritans Suicide Statistics Report states:
The male suicide rate in 2013 is the highest since 2001. The suicide rate among men aged 45-59, 25.1 per 100,000, is the highest for this group since 1981.
It is uncertain why men are more vulnerable to suicide, in my work as a therapist I see far more women than men, and I know that men see it as some failing on their part when they do eventually seek out professional help, one client even said he didn’t understand why he couldn’t just “man up!”
There are many things that can cause suicidal feelings, knowing that there is someone who will listen and not judge can help the process of starting to look at things differently. There are many agencies offering help: The Samaritans, Mind, your GP or a therapist can all offer support and guidance.
For managers who want to introduce a discussion around mental health you can find lots of useful resources on the Time to Change website.
Whatever you do, make sure you make some ‘Time to Talk’ on 4th February, it might just be the opportunity someone needs to open up.
Namasté provide training workshops to help managers identify signs of stress and the role they can play in helping to reduce and prevent stress at work.
We will also be offering an eight week Mindfulness programme in the Spring, aimed at people who may be off sick with stress to help a return to work, or to help those who are in work but struggling to cope with life to stay at work.
To find out more about how to manage wellbeing at work call today on 01954 267640.Find out more following this link to Google+