Employee wellness is not limited to just physical health but includes mental and emotional health. Many companies remain focused on physical health only and neglect mental health when it comes to employee well-being. This is a mistake in the current times when a large number of employees the world over are suffering from anxiety, depression, and many other mental ailments.
As a manager or team leader, you should look after the mental health of your team members. To attain this objective, mental wellness activities can be conducted. Mental wellness activities reduce the risk of developing mental ailments. Although mental issues can also arise as a result of trauma, bad childhood, and even genetics, mental wellness activities ensure that the employees’ mental health remains as robust as possible.
Top Mental Wellness Activities
Employee Mental Health Counseling
Providing professional help to the employees in the form of counseling psychologists is one of the major mental wellness activities. The company can tie up with a reputed agency providing professional mental health counseling. This way, the employees get the facility to get counseling sessions to discuss their mental issues with professionals trained to identify and treat mental issues.
Mental health is still a taboo subject. Thus, it must be made clear to the employees that the company supports them in maintaining their mental health in the best possible state. There should not be any hesitation in seeking professional help available to them.
Watching comedy/entertainment shows also comes under mental wellness activities. This is because comedy and entertainment provide an escape route from the daily stress of work-life and help keep depressing thoughts at bay. Thus, organizing such shows for the employees at regular intervals not only breaks the workplace’s monotony but also has a positive impact on the employees’ mental health.
Volunteering for Charitable Activities/community Services
Volunteering for charitable activities and community services helps overcome stress, anxiety, and depression because the sense of purpose to help people or animals in need makes the brain active and diverts thoughts away from negativity. Contacting people and making new friendships, which are inevitable parts of volunteer work, help build a strong support system to combat loneliness and depression. Helping others provides immense pleasure and happiness as well. Thus, volunteer work is ranked among highly effective mental wellness activities.
The company can tie up with NGOs and volunteer organizations to assist with their activities. This way, the employees get the opportunity to fulfill their responsibilities towards society and improve their mental health.
Social Activities in The Office
The office should not be limited to work only. The office environment plays a major role in improving or ruining the employees’ mental health. A depressing office environment has an adverse impact on the employees’ mental health, spending a large part of their days in it.
To break the daily humdrum of work and make the office environment more relaxing, social activities must be organized. Social activities can be office parties, games, fitness challenges, singing competitions, and more. Such activities should be informal and full of fun. Apart from diverting the mind from work stress, social activities also enable the employees to bond with each other and develop team spirit.
Yoga has proved to be one of the most effective mental wellness activities. Stress is a major mental health problem affecting working professionals. Yoga reduces stress by reducing the stress hormone Cortisol. Yoga also has a calming effect on the mind and prevents anxiety and panic attacks. Furthermore, yoga helps in improving mood, improves focus, and enhances confidence. Overall, doing yoga regularly has a positive impact on mental health.
The company can organize yoga classes for the employees daily. The classes can be held before or after office hours. A professional yoga instructor can be hired for this purpose. The yoga sessions can be conducted either physically at the office itself or through a virtual medium.
A large body of research suggests that meditation is highly beneficial for mental health. Thus, meditation is considered among the most effective mental wellness activities. Meditation calms the mind and provides inner peace. Consequently, stress and anxiety caused by workload are relieved by meditation. Meditation also reduces negative thoughts and emotions. People who practice meditation daily can combat stressful situations without losing focus or peace of mind.
In view of the mental health benefits of meditation, the employees can be encouraged to incorporate meditation into their lives. To this end, meditation sessions by a trained meditation expert can be organized to instruct the employees about the correct ways of doing meditation.
Dance has been shown to reduce stress, anxiety, and depression. The physical movements of dance elevate the levels of dopamine and endorphins, which impart a feeling of pleasure and happiness. Focus on the movements and the music help in diverting attention from negative thoughts. Moreover, dance helps in releasing emotions through the steps. All such effects help in reducing stress, anxiety, and depression. Thus, dance is considered one of the successful mental wellness activities.
Weekly or monthly dance sessions immensely benefit the mental health of the employees. To this end, dance sessions can be organized for the employees. The dance sessions can be of any nature, such as free-flowing, choreographed, synchronized, and more.
Regular Feedback Sessions with Managers and HRs
Seeking feedback from the managers and HRs regarding the overall mental state of the employees in their teams counts among effective mental wellness activities. This is because feedback sessions help identify employees who may be suffering from mental issues and need assistance.
Mental wellness activities should be included in the employee wellness program. Employees with a sound mental condition are more likely to be highly productive and motivated than employees suffering from mental issues.