Mental Health Awareness Week puts a spotlight on mental health, and this year the focus is on anxiety – understanding and coping with anxiety – and starting conversations and sharing experiences about it to help others. New research from the Mental Health Foundation has shown that 60% of UK adults experience anxiety that interferes with their daily life.
It is normal to feel tense, worried and afraid about the future, but if you find this overshadows your daily activities, don’t struggle alone. There is lots of support out there (self-help and professional) and a good starting point is to visit the Mental Health Foundation website.
The wellbeing of our people at Copylab has always been a priority. Our Founder/CEO, Ross Hunter, installed a supportive and open culture from the outset. This radiates through the leadership team and is fundamental to ensure people can talk about their mental health challenges.
We like the Mental Health Foundation’s approach of preventing mental health problems before they happen. Therefore, on a practical level, we have a monthly wellbeing allowance that our team can use for anything that boosts their mental wellbeing, whether this is a massage, a climbing session, yoga or a subscription to a mindfulness app such as Calm. For professional support, our team has access to private health care, including online and face-to-face talking therapies.
Our flexible and remote working practices allow our people to have the work-life balance that suits them. However, we are not naive about the challenges of remote work and how this can impact mental health. Our leaders play a key role in supporting our people, and our team meets in person quarterly. We also use project work to bring people together and create connections globally.
During Mental Health Awareness Week, people will be sharing top tips on social media on how they manage their anxiety (#ToHelpMyAnxiety). My top tip is to ‘challenge your thoughts.’ When you get overly worried or anxious about something, ask yourself: “is my concern reality or my imagination?” Changing your perspective on things can really help.
We celebrate the focus on mental health this week, but know it is a daily challenge for some people and hope this awareness week achieves year-round recognition and understanding.