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Understanding Mental Health: Signs, Actions, and Resources for Well-being

Last updated: April, 2024

Mental health signs written on a typewriter

What is Mental Health?

Mental health encompasses all together our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act, influencing our daily lives, relationships, and overall quality of life.

Mental health is essential for coping with stress, navigating challenges, and enjoying a fulfilling life.





Signs it is Time to Care: Mental Health Issue Symptoms

Recognising the signs of mental health issues is crucial for early intervention and support. Some common symptoms may include:


Persistent feelings of sadness, anxiety, or hopelessness

Feeling overwhelmed or constantly stressed can be indicative of underlying mental health issues that require attention.


Changes in sleep patterns, appetite, or energy levels

Physical symptoms like insomnia, fatigue, or changes in appetite without apparent medical cause are often related to mental health challenges.


Difficulty concentrating or making decisions

Struggling to cope with daily challenges or experiencing a lack of motivation can be signs of underlying mental health concerns.


Withdrawal from social activities, relationships, and isolation

Avoiding social interactions or withdrawing from once enjoyable activities may indicate mental health issues such as depression or anxiety.


Mood swings, emotional instability or irritability

Fluctuations in mood, irritability, or persistent sadness may signal the need for mental health support.


Substance abuse or engaging in risky behaviours


Thoughts of self-harm or suicide

Lifeline: Call 13 11 14, text 0477 13 11 14 or chat online.




7 Keys to Promote Mental Health at an Individual Level



Gratitude jar for mental health with New Reflections

At an individual level, focusing on specific adjustments contributes to enhancing your mental wellness and overall life satisfaction. We suggest below 7 Key Practices that empower you to prioritise your mental health, build resilience, and foster positive well-being in your daily life. 

These practices are designed to align with the rhythm of life, with one key practice suggested for each day of the week, allowing you to integrate them seamlessly into your routines and gradually cultivate a healthier mindset and lifestyle.


Let's explore seven key practices that you can adopt to improve your mental health and well-being proactively.


Self-awareness

Recognise and understand your emotions, thoughts, and behaviours.


Self-care

Prioritise activities that promote physical, emotional, and mental well-being, such as exercise, relaxation techniques, and hobbies.


Healthy relationships

Cultivate supportive connections with friends, family, and peers.


Stress management

Develop coping strategies to manage stress effectively, such as mindfulness, breathing exercises, or time management techniques.


Boundaries

Set clear boundaries to protect your mental and emotional space, including saying no when necessary.


Seek help

Reach out to mental health professionals or support groups if you experience persistent challenges.


Positive mindset

Foster a positive outlook, practice gratitude, and focus on strengths and achievements.




7 Keys to Promote Mental Health at a Team Level



Positive thinking training for team mental health with New Reflections

Teams play a vital role in creating a supportive and collaborative environment and fostering a mentally healthy workplace. Effective teamwork not only enhances productivity and innovation but also contributes significantly to the mental well-being of team members

At a team level, implementing specific strategies promotes a positive work culture, strengthens relationships, and enhances overall team dynamics. 


Let's explore seven key practices that your team and leaders can adopt to prioritise mental health, support each other's well-being, and thrive collectively in your workplace.


Communication

Encourage open and honest communication within teams to address challenges and support each other. Aim to develop excellent constructive feedback skills.


Collaboration

Foster teamwork, cooperation, and mutual support to achieve common goals. Commit to developing essential soft skills and social skills to thrive as a team.


Recognition and appreciation

Acknowledge and celebrate individual and team accomplishments to boost morale and motivation.


Work-life balance

Promote policies and practices that support a healthy balance between work responsibilities and personal life.


Psychological safety

Create an environment where team members feel safe to express ideas, share concerns, and seek help without fear of judgment.


Training and education

Provide training on mental health awareness, communication, stress management, and resilience-building techniques.


Peer support networks

Establish peer support programs or buddy programs to offer additional support within teams.





7 Keys to Promote Mental Health At a Company Level


Fostering a culture of mental well-being and support at a company level is critical to creating a healthy and thriving workplace. Organisations have a unique opportunity and responsibility to prioritise mental health initiatives that benefit employees across all levels. 

By implementing specific strategies and policies, companies can promote a positive work environment, reduce stress, and enhance employee satisfaction and performance. 


Let's explore seven key practices that your company can adopt to proactively promote mental health, create a supportive culture, and prioritise the well-being of its workforce.


Leadership commitment

Demonstrate leadership support and commitment to mental health initiatives through policies, resources, and a strong organisational culture.


Mental health policies

Develop and implement policies that promote mental well-being, including flexible work arrangements, mental health days, and access to counselling services.


Training and awareness

Provide training and awareness programs for employees and managers on mental health topics, stigma reduction, and available resources.


Employee assistance programs (EAPs)

Offer confidential EAPs that provide counselling, support, and referrals for mental health issues.


Workplace accommodations

Accommodate employees' mental health needs, such as flexible schedules, quiet spaces, or ergonomic adjustments.


Wellness programs

Implement wellness initiatives that promote physical, emotional, and mental well-being, such as fitness programs, mindfulness sessions, "R u OK" days, or stress management workshops.


Evaluation and feedback

Regularly evaluate the effectiveness of mental health initiatives, seek feedback from employees, and make adjustments as needed to continuously improve support.


By understanding mental health, recognising signs of concern, and promoting well-being through individual, team, and company-level strategies, we can create supportive environments that prioritise mental health and foster resilience for all. 2 ingredients are keys in this recipe: awareness and soft skills development!



Maud Vanhoutte





Emergency Links in Australia

To members of the public who may be struggling, know that help is available 24/7.

In case of mental health emergencies or immediate support needs, here are essential links and contacts in Australia:

Emergency services: Dial 000 for immediate assistance in life-threatening situations.

  • NSW Mental Health Line: Call 1800 011 511.

  • Lifeline: Call 13 11 14, text 0477 13 11 14 or chat online.

  • Beyond Blue: 1300 22 4636 (24/7 support for anxiety, depression, and suicide prevention)

  • Kids Helpline: 1800 55 1800 (24/7 support for children and young people)

  • Headspace: 1800 650 890 (Mental health support for young people aged 12-25)

  • 1800RESPECT: Call 1800 737 732, text 0458 737 732 or chat online.

  • 13 Yarn: Call 13 92 76.

  • MensLine Australia: Call 1300 78 99 78.


If you or someone you know is in immediate danger, call Triple Zero (000).








Explore 3 Training Courses To Promote Mental Health At Work


Click on a course below to learn more and take the next step in promoting Mental Health in your workplace:







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