Mental Health Month

May is Mental Health Month

 
The summer months are dedicated to Mental Health and Awareness. Amidst our current landscape of the on-going pandemic, social justice issues, and political unrest, being mindful of our own, and other’s mental health needs to be top of mind to support overall wellbeing.

Our culture, beliefs, sexual identity, values, race and language all affect how we perceive and experience mental health conditions. Cultural differences can significantly influence what treatments, coping mechanisms and supports work for us.

Please take time to utilize the tools, resources, and programming provided to learn, break down the stigma around mental health, and support yourself, family, friends, and students.

 
Tools 2 Thrive

Accepting Reality

Adapting After Trauma and Stress

Dealing with Anger and Frustration

Getting Out of Thinking Traps

Processing Big Changes

Taking Time for Yourself

Additional Resources from Mental Health America - Podcasts, Articles, Webinars and Worksheets

Processing Big Changes

Practicing Radical Acceptance

COVID-19

A wealth of articles, webinars, blogs, and podcasts about how to deal with the mental health struggles presented by the COVID-19 pandemic can be found at mhanational.org/covid19.

Resources for Supervisors and Managers

Healthy Management Practices During Covid-19

A workplace culture that promotes supervisor support and guidance helps employees better manage their stress and feel more motivated to perform their jobs well. Here are four items to consider when improving employee well-being as a supervisor:

Be supportive. Regular check-ins with employees can help supervisors better understand their needs and provide the appropriate support. In addition, regular supervisor check-ins should emphasize bi-directional feedback, acknowledge employees’ efforts, and provide emotional support. If an employee expresses a mental health concern, here’s how the supervisor can start the conversation:

  • Ask appropriate open-ended questions.
  • Actively listen with complete attention to the employee.
  • Recognize their feelings and express understanding back to them.
  • Encourage them to use the company’s mental health resources.

Be flexible. Supervisors should negotiate realistic expectations and strategize how to best meet these expectations under the given circumstances in collaboration with employees. In terms of employee output, focus on goals accomplished rather than hours logged. Being empathetic, patient, and flexible as a supervisor can mean a lot for employees who are struggling with their mental health.

Stay connected. According to MHA’s 2018 Mind the Workplace Report, having positive relationships with coworkers and supervisors is the top reason employees feel satisfied at work. However, 65 percent of respondents reported feeling isolated in their workplace due to an unhelpful and hostile environment. Working alone because a workplace is hostile or unhelpful is the factor most strongly correlated with overall workplace health. Connection is crucial, and supervisors can help facilitate how employees stay connected in a virtual work environment. Examples include video calls to encourage employees to share stressors and coping strategies or a weekly newsletter that shares employees’ favorite indoor activities, recipes, and exercise routines.

Model and practice self-care. When providing support to others, a little self-care can alleviate stress and help a supervisor tackle challenges with a clear mind. Examples for self-care include staying organized and prioritize; taking frequent breaks; practicing meditation, breathing, or expressing gratitude; or video chatting with a loved one.

For more information on mentally healthy management practices, please visit MHA’s website at www.mhanational.org/workplace or review the following articles:

What are some mentally healthy management practices?
Why is employee recognition important?

Information on this page is referenced from Mental Health America (MHA): Mind the Workplace Health Survey 2021.

Safe and Welcoming Work Environments

Employers that acted with transparency, empathy, and flexibility likely experienced a smoother transition during COVID-19 than companies that did not consider workplace culture, especially in high-stress or remote work environments.

To provide a safe and welcoming environment for employees who live with mental illnesses, employers should consider:

  • Hiring and training supervisors to feel comfortable providing emotional support
  • Encouraging employees to talk to their supervisors about changing job stressors
  • Encouraging supervisors to check-in with employees regularly
  • Providing proper recognition to employees for their efforts
  • Providing additional resources for emotional support

For more information on how to provide a safe and welcoming environment for employees who live with mental illness, please visit MHA’s website at www.mhanational.org/workplace or review the following articles:

What is emotional intelligence and how does it apply to the workplace?
What additional resource supports can we offer?

Information on this page is referenced from Mental Health America (MHA): Mind the Workplace Health Survey 2021.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Resources
It is essential for culture and identity to be a part of the mental health conversation.

National Alliance on Mental Illness

Strength Over Silence

Stories Of Courage, Culture And Community
In this ongoing docuseries, NAMI highlights perspectives on mental health across backgrounds and communities. Through candid and courageous stories of lived experience, these mental health champions share their resilience and recovery, emphasizing the importance of culture and identity in the mental health movement.

You Are Not AloneMental Health America Fast FactYou Are Not AloneMental Health America Fast FactYou Are Not AloneMental Health America Fast FactYou Are Not AloneMental Health America Fast FactMental Health America Fast FactYou Are Not AloneMental Health America Fast FactYou Are Not Alone

Take A Mental Health Test

FINDING HELPMental Health America Resources

The Employee Assistance Program is fully operational and available to any UConn employee or family member by calling the EAP at 860-486-1307 or the 24 hour line at 860-679-2877.

Anthem members have access to LiveHealth Online for telehealth services, including behavioral health.

Getting Help Resources for Behavioral Health from CT Clearinghouse, a program of the CT Center for Prevention, Wellness and Recovery