How to prioritise your mental health

Career-driven women, mothers and Black women are highly likely to have their mental health compromised, according to the Women in the Workplace.

This means that women who have their sights set on the corner office need to take serious action to monitor and maintain a healthy state of mind. The best way to achieve this, is to incorporate a number of tools and tips into your daily routine to create health habits that over time, will boost your mental health. 

Practice mindfulness 
What does mindfulness mean to you? Whether it’s taking 10 minutes to meditate, going on a long run or writing a gratuity list, figuring out the best mindful techniques to help you unwind can significantly boost your mental health. But of course, once you know what works best for you, get selfish with it. Make sure to allocate a little slice of your day to focus on recharging your batteries, no matter how busy your diary gets. 

Find your friends
When times get tough, sometimes we just need someone to act as a soundboard to allow us to get everything we need out of our brains and into the universe. Either find someone or a group of people who will listen to your problems and support you – of course, you can do the same for them. But although it’s good to get things off our chest, make sure you know when to stop – the goal is to get the negative feelings out of our systems, rather than dwelling on them for too long. 

Keep it professional
If something has bugged you at work, whether it’s a passive aggressive email or the fact that you’re still waiting for a promotion, remember that the chances are, it wasn’t intended as a personal attack. Try to forgive quickly and let go of any resentment that could cause friction in the future. If the same stressors keep popping up, they need to be addressed with the HR department or a calm and collected conversation with the individual. 

Take regular breaks
It can be so easy to sit down at your laptop early in the morning and not look up from the screen until hours after you’re supposed to finish. Although working hard is great for productivity, it can be awful for your mental health and means you're on the path to burn out. Make sure that you always take at least 30 minutes away from work during lunch – ideally stepping outside to enjoy some fresh air. Or, try setting an alarm every few hours to have short breaks throughout the day.
 
Correct company culture
Sometimes, no amount of mindfulness, time away from the office or conversations with friends can help you adapt to a toxic work environment. If you believe your company could be doing more to support individuals then make sure you voice your concerns. Figure out what you think should be changed, how the company could get there and propose it to senior members of staff or the HR department. Businesses need to prioritise mental health, but if you’re still not being heard, you need to weigh up whether the role could be having a long-term impact.

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