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4 Ways The Organizational Environment Can Promote Recovery from Mental Illness

4 Ways The Organizational Environment Can Promote Recovery from Mental Illness

As a leader in your organization, you have the ability to define company culture, and that all starts in the workplace environment. Culture tells employees how daily interactions can be expected to occur, and what their boundaries are when communicating with each other and those higher up. Employee wellbeing truly depends on the organizational climate, as a toxic environment can be extremely dangerous, leading up to claims of harassment or abuse, rumors that spread like wildfire, burnout, and much more. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 1 in 4 people will be affected by a mental illness or neurological disorder, with mental illness and substance abuse problems costing employers between $79 and $105 billion each year.

In order to reduce these costs, we have to take a look at the way our organizational culture is defined, and how this is playing out into the environment. Stacy Engle, EVP of Fierce Communications, told Business News Daily in 2017,

“When we feel overwhelmed, most of us don’t perform at our best…The culture of an organization is a reflection on the mental state of its employees, and this goes beyond what occurs at the office.”

The following are some ways that you can open up your organization’s environment to become supportive of mental health, rather than degrade it or hide it away:


  • Promote open communication. Regularly talk with your employees about the importance of maintaining their mental health, and have speakers come in to provide presentations on stress-management and self-care tips.
  • Allow employees to take mental health days. Whether part of sick days or in its own category, mental health days can allow employees to take a day off when they need to clear their head and practice self-care. This can lead to higher retention rates, and your employees will thank you for taking care of them in one of the best ways possible.
  • Build up a supportive team. Show support to others who are taking control of their mental health, and your employees will likely do the same. Not everyone has to talk about their personal life, but simple encouragement and support can greatly improve the workplace environment.
  • Create a healthy culture. Provide healthy snacks nearby, create employee health challenges (such as who can do the longest plank!), provide employees with a free pass to the gym, and more.

If you haven’t already, speak with someone from a professional treatment center to learn more about programs to best suit your needs. Optimal recovery is possible, and you are not alone in your pursuit for happiness, health, and wellbeing.

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