Mental health in the work place

Postby Septimus » Wed Dec 20, 2017 4:49 pm

I work for a large company and there is a big push on helping people dealing with mental health issues.

Basically If anybody is believed to have a mental health issue, people should simply show concern and ask if that person is okay.

I would like some opinions on this approach because to me it seems like a massive simplification and generalization of mental health issues and how to deal with them.
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#1

Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Wed Dec 20, 2017 9:50 pm

Yes, it is a massive simplification, and it should be. Companies hire employees to perform a specific role. They don’t also hire them to combat terrorists or criminals, to respond to active shooters, put out fires, or be therapists. Yet, these are workplace issues that need to be recognized and addressed. So, evacuation drills are practiced annually, posters are put up that say, “See something, say something,” supervisors are told how to lock down the facility and in your company they are saying that if someone looks to have a mental issue, don’t remain quiet, but instead ask them how they are doing.

It sounds like they are doing more than most companies and I wonder what may have prompted this mental health initiative? It is a good idea. If a person says they are not mentally well, it sounds like there needs to be an explicit step to say something.
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#2

Postby Septimus » Tue Jan 02, 2018 8:31 pm

The trouble is if they don't have the proper knowledge of conditions like depression or anxiety and how to differentiate and deal with the two, they may do more harm than good.

Mental health is a big cause of work absence so money will be a big reason.
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#3

Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Tue Jan 02, 2018 9:34 pm

Septimus wrote:The trouble is if they don't have the proper knowledge of conditions like depression or anxiety and how to differentiate and deal with the two, they may do more harm than good.


Using your logic, then employees don't have the proper knowledge to deal with a fire, with identifying a terrorist or criminal situation, or with medical training to help an unconscious or injured coworker. If faced with any of these situations, an argument can be made that they may do more harm than good.

Does this means companies should not educate their employees to use a fire extinguisher, to report suspicious activity, to use an AED or perform CPR?

You can argue if you like what "proper knowledge" should entail regarding interacting with a person struggling with a mental health issue. Fair enough, you are welcome to your opinion. You can choose to disagree with the number of hours or quality of training, you can disagree with how that training is delivered. For fire extinguisher training and "see something say something" it is normally just a pamphlet distributed by security or human resources.

If you have such an issue with this...if you fear more harm than good, if you think proper knowledge means needing to be able to distinguish between anxiety and depression and how to deal with each, then create your own solution, create the training you would want employees to have and go to human resources and make your case.

What would you propose?
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#4

Postby Septimus » Wed Jan 10, 2018 12:03 am

Richard@DecisionSkills wrote:Does this means companies should not educate their employees to use a fire extinguisher, to report suspicious activity, to use an AED or perform CPR?


Comparing using a fire extinguisher and the other examples to dealing with complex mental health issues is nonsense.
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#5

Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Wed Jan 10, 2018 12:27 am

Septimus wrote:Comparing using a fire extinguisher and the other examples to dealing with complex mental health issues is nonsense.


If that is what you wish to believe, then provide your opinion and your alternative solution to human resources. All I currently hear from you is complaining and disagreeing about how the company is try to address a problem, but you offer no alternative. That is nonsense.

What is your alternative, to simply ignore mental health issues in the workforce?

An argument can be made that the company is putting resources into a non-issue, that mental health in the workforce is not a risk. But, to make that argument you first need to understand why the company decided to go forward with this initiative. More than likely there were some incidents in the company that resulted in a mental health initiative.

Again, what is your alternate solution?
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#6

Postby quietvoice » Wed Jan 10, 2018 12:46 am

Septimus wrote:Comparing using a fire extinguisher and the other examples to dealing with complex mental health issues is nonsense.

Mental health is not as complex as many people make it out to be.

If interested, do a search for "Three Principles" (Mind-Thought-Consciousness). Once one grasps these principles of how our psychological experience is created, one can move towards freeing oneself [of the] fear of living, or however one may define their predicament.
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#7

Postby Septimus » Wed May 30, 2018 5:07 pm

Richard@DecisionSkills wrote:
If that is what you wish to believe, then provide your opinion and your alternative solution to human resources. All I currently hear from you is complaining and disagreeing about how the company is try to address a problem, but you offer no alternative. That is nonsense.



The alternative is simple, properly inform and educate. Someone who doesn't understand the difference between anxiety and depression has no place trying to help.
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#8

Postby Septimus » Wed May 30, 2018 5:12 pm

quietvoice wrote:Mental health is not as complex as many people make it out to be.


It's more complex than the typical person thinks it is, even those that have some training in it.
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#9

Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Wed May 30, 2018 5:33 pm

Septimus wrote: The alternative is simple, properly inform and educate. Someone who doesn't understand the difference between anxiety and depression has no place trying to help.


It has been ~4 to 5 months since you posted. Given you feel so strongly about the issue and have an alternative, what actions have you taken? If you think people need to know the difference between anxiety and depression before they can help, what training have you presented to HR? At a minimum have you trained your colleagues?
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#10

Postby quietvoice » Wed May 30, 2018 5:34 pm

Septimus wrote:
quietvoice wrote:Mental health is not as complex as many people make it out to be.

It's more complex than the typical person thinks it is, even those that have some training in it.



Judith Sedgeman wrote:*
What are the Three Principles of Innate Health?
Three universal principles explain the thinking process: Mind, Consciousness and Thought. Simply put, Mind is the energy of life, the fact that we are alive. Thought is our ability to create forms or ideas from that energy. Consciousness is our ability to experience what we think as real. In other words, we are born thinking. We think our way through life. We see life through our thoughts as we go, and the quality of our thinking determines the quality of our lives (how we see things moment-to-moment).

Awakening to those principles sets people free from attachment to the contents of any particular thinking with the knowledge that thoughts naturally come and go. It frees people to see their state of mind, their felt response to perceived reality, as an indicator of the moment-to-moment quality of their thinking. A stressed or negative feeling state or state of mind produces a low mood and increasing tension, a feeling of insecurity, or dis-ease. That feeling warns us to allow our thinking to quiet. As people learn to trust their state of mind as a guide through life, they catch themselves earlier and earlier in the process of insecure thinking that can lead to chronic stressful states of mind and worse. Recognizing the signal to quiet down, people can leave negative thoughts alone and allow them to pass. As our minds quiet, our feeling changes and our perceived reality changes. We naturally regain our ability to address life circumstances and challenges from a wiser, more optimistic and hopeful perspective.

Once people recognize that innate health is constant and always accessible, they are able to navigate the ups and downs of their thinking without frightening themselves with their most negative thinking or deceiving themselves with their most positive thinking. We are able to be grateful in moments of exhilaration and graceful in moments of distress, and to experience the rich landscape of all our thinking as the gift of life. (Judy Sedgeman, Three Principles Practitioner)


Is mental health any more complicated than this? If so, in what way?
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#11

Postby Septimus » Wed May 30, 2018 5:44 pm

Richard@DecisionSkills wrote:
It has been ~4 to 5 months since you posted. Given you feel so strongly about the issue and have an alternative, what actions have you taken? If you think people need to know the difference between anxiety and depression before they can help, what training have you presented to HR? At a minimum have you trained your colleagues?


You misunderstand why I asked the question, which is simply to get the views of others.
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#12

Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Wed May 30, 2018 5:56 pm

Septimus wrote: Someone who doesn't understand the difference between anxiety and depression has no place trying to help.


The above is a statement. It is not soliciting an opinion.

If you want an opinion, it in no way requires knowing the difference between anxiety and depression for an employer to inform/educate their employees to "See something, say something." If you notice a change of behavior in your work colleague, inform your supervisor or HR.

If Septimus is usually a fun, outgoing employee and this changes to crying and being irritable, inform your supervisor or HR.
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#13

Postby Septimus » Wed May 30, 2018 6:00 pm

quietvoice wrote:Is mental health any more complicated than this? If so, in what way?


I don't have time to go into it in too much detail, but lets just say after reading about studies in neurosciences, personality psychology, social psychology and other forms of influence I strongly believe it's a lot more complicated.

However I'm not saying those principles are wrong, you have to treat people on an individual basis. They are general principles, I'm sure they will work for some.
Last edited by Septimus on Wed May 30, 2018 6:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#14

Postby Septimus » Wed May 30, 2018 6:04 pm

Richard@DecisionSkills wrote:
Septimus wrote: Someone who doesn't understand the difference between anxiety and depression has no place trying to help.


The above is a statement. It is not soliciting an opinion.

If you want an opinion, it in no way requires knowing the difference between anxiety and depression for an employer to inform/educate their employees to "See something, say something." If you notice a change of behavior in your work colleague, inform your supervisor or HR.

If Septimus is usually a fun, outgoing employee and this changes to crying and being irritable, inform your supervisor or HR.


I was after differing views and opinions from my original post only. Not interested in contacting HR!
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