“I’m tired of dealing with mean, resentful people who simply clamor for unrealistic solutions in a short span of time,” said Jonathan (name changed) of Anaheim, while speaking to his mother over the phone. It was the third time in last one week that Martha, 54, wasn’t feeling very good after speaking to her 32-year-old son, who sounded different on the phone. Jonathan’s voice no longer had the same excitement and humor as before, instead, he began to sound low each time he called. He would always complain of a hostile environment at work.
A master’s degree holder from San Francisco State University, Jonathan was working with a tech startup in the Silicon Valley. He was a high-performing sales professional at a fast growing firm based in the Bay Area and was promoted in no time. His jealous, scheming fellow workers hatched a conspiracy to weed him out of the competition by indulging in rumor mongering.
Over a period of time, he bottled up an abundance of tough thoughts, emotions and insecurities. The mental chaos, the never-ending work pressure and sour relations with his manager, eventually, took a heavy toll on him.
Feeling alienated and unable to concentrate, Jonathan started disliking his workplace. Every morning, he would experience constant anxiety about what could possibly unfold during the day. He left work, every day, stressed and burnt out, only to drink heavily at night as an excuse to drown his anxiety. In no time he suffered a mental breakdown.
One day, the doorbell rang and Martha opened the door to the words: “Mom, I don’t want to go back.” After blurting this out, Jonathan staggered into the house. Seeing his disheveled hair and disoriented gaze, Martha knew her son needed help desperately. She had failed to recognize a serious problem and his cry for help.
Jonathan’s is not a one-off case. There are millions like him across the United States. In today’s fast-paced world, more and more Americans are finding it increasingly tough to switch off from the stresses of the workplace. According to the Indeed Job Happiness Index 2016, 10 U.S. cities have been identified with the lowest levels of job satisfaction. Moreover, a 2016 study conducted by the Ohio State University suggests that Americans experiencing dissatisfaction at work in their late twenties and thirties could suffer from mental health-related problems in their early forties. Researchers stressed on the fact that a horrible job could impact one’s physical health but its effect was significantly more on one’s mental health.
A vast majority of Americans spend a large part of their waking hours at the workplace. So, his or her emotional well-being depends on the office environment, work culture and, of course, the boss. However, in spite of the huge role of the workplace in employee well-being, most employers tend to ignore the importance of mental health. According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), in 2015, there were over 43 million people aged 18 years or older in the country – representing about 18 percent of all adult population — with any mental illness (AMI) within the previous year.
Dealing with workplace-related mental health problems
In the last five years, despite employee-friendly policies, several surveys and studies suggest that employees across the country rate their stress levels as above average, which has in a way taken a heavy toll on their job performance. It is unfortunate that people don’t give equal importance to mental health problems as in the case of other physical ailments like hypertension, diabetes or heart disease. Workplaces should foster environments which take pride in the physical as well as mental health of employees.
On the positive side, most mental health issues are curable. What matters is employers should take constructive steps to remove the barriers and stigma linked to seeking counseling or professional treatment and ensure that confidential disclosures are handled in a non-judgmental manner. Above all, learning to identify the warning signs of a mental health problem could go a long way in preventing them. Some of the most common mental health problems observed in the workplace are:
- Depression: At work, depression is most likely to surface as nervousness, restlessness or irritation and in physical manifestations such as aches and pains, which could lead to impaired judgment or clouded decision-making abilities.
- Bipolar disorder: Bipolar disorder is a state of mental oscillation between the phases of elevated and depressed mood. In an elevated phase, employees may seem highly charged, but actual productivity may drop. Whereas, in a depressed phase, employees normally exhibit all symptoms related to withdrawal and depression.
- Anxiety disorders: Anxiety experienced during work may manifest as restlessness, fatigue, inability in concentrating and a preoccupied mind.
- Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD): ADHD may lead to a disorderly way of working, ineptitude to meet targets and deadlines, problems in following instructions and getting along with colleagues.
Sovereign Health can help
Despite the availability of several effective treatments, the stigma of being branded as a weak person prevents many from overcoming mental illness through professional help. Knowing how to deal with mental illness on the same lines as in the case of other chronic diseases, which demand a thorough mental health diagnosis, regular check-ups and monitoring of treatment adherence increases chances of recovery.
Mental health disorders must be nipped in the bud or else they can be immensely devastating. Do not let them grow to an extent where there is no scope for recovery. Sovereign Health provides treatments for all kinds of mental health disorders as well as any underlying health condition. Sovereign Health of San Clemente, California offers a variety of customized mental health treatment programs suited to treat the person holistically. Patients can opt for individual and group psychotherapy, or alternative therapeutic activities to regain control of their lives.
Whether you wish to know how to overcome mental illness or are looking for mental illness treatment centers in California or at a place closer home, we have facilities in all major places in the country. Our residential mental health facilities in California are among the best in the nation. Contact our 24/7 helpline to know about the causes of mental illness or the most effective recovery programs to treat them at the earliest.