Your Mental Health Diagnosis and Your Career

Mental health issues can lead to debilitating symptoms that can affect every aspect of your daily life. But, when these symptoms start affecting your career path, they can be an even bigger issue, leading to job loss, loss of confidence at your workplace, increased anxiety about finances, and more. But, a mental health diagnosis doesn’t have to negatively affect your career. And, the right combination of treatments can help people keep their jobs and continue on the path to their dream careers.

The Influence of Mental Health in the Workplace

Over 18 million US citizens, or about 20% of the adult population, are living with a mental health diagnosis. And, each of these individuals have bills to pay, career dreams, and full-time jobs to attend to support their families. So, it’s no wonder that these individuals worry about the impact that their mental health issues have on their career path and finances.

Unfortunately, people living with mental health issues are two or even three times more likely to be unemployed. This is due to them being more likely to need to call off work to deal with symptoms of their illness or underperformance because mental health issues delay tasks or the ability to complete tasks under pressure. The sad reality is that the health system in the US is not designed to support those with mental health issues. So, many living with these conditions struggle with poverty, and never get to live out their dreams of having the careers they want.

How Employers Can Better Empower People with Mental Health Issues

One of the best solutions to address mental health in the workplace is to have employers promote mental health awareness. And, promote a workplace culture that provides support for employees who deal with mental health issues. The reason that providing this kind of support for employees dealing with these issues in the workplace includes the many benefits it entails like:

  • the opportunity for employers to provide positive incentives for healthy workplace practices
  • available supportive networks
  • structures of communication and professional boundaries
  • measurements of healthy behaviors and process tracking

Some Things Employers Can do to Promote Mental Health Awareness and Support

If you’re an employer and you wish to provide a better workplace environment and support to employees who may be dealing with mental health issues, you can:

  • provide assessments and screenings for current employees to determine if they need help with mental health issues
  • outsource mental health facilities to provide free support to employees for mental health issues
  • give information in the form of brochures,
  • provide spaces for individuals to decompress during mental health symptoms experienced in the workplace (for example, a safe and quiet room)
  • allow employees to make decisions about projects and duties based on current levels of stress

What Employees With a Mental Health Diagnosis Can do to Improve Workplace Experiences

While employers can certainly provide support and awareness to help employees who may be dealing with mental health issues, individuals who are diagnosed with mental health issues are the most responsible for taking charge of their mental health care. This way, they can get the best experience in their workplace and perform at their peak without worrying about mental health symptoms which may debilitate their work performance.

Some things people with mental health issues can do to make sure that their mental health diagnosis doesn’t affect their work performance include:

  • ask employers to provide the above measures to help stimulate mental health awareness and support in the workplace
  • consider being open about sharing your experience with mental health so that colleagues can overcome myths and stigma surrounding mental health issues
  • take time when you’re off work to reduce stress and anxiety by utilizing holistic methods including meditation, yoga, acupuncture, etc.
  • set personal goals for your mental health recovery and treatment and work to achieve these goals
  • get help during times of duress by seeking mental health treatment
  • take prescribed medications and utilize therapy

Overcoming the Impacts of a Mental Health Diagnosis in the Workplace by Getting Help

The best thing you can do for yourself as a person with a mental health diagnosis is to take responsibility for your care. Do this by reaching out for mental health support from psychiatric and psychological professionals at Delray Center for Healing. Learn more about our outpatient approach to treatment services and inquire today.