World Mental Health Day is upon us and at RISE we believe that prevention begins with better understanding of the issues that can lead to mental illness. Here RISE’s mental first aider, Christine Maier, is interviewed to get her take on why it is important to raise awareness of mental health in the work place.
Why did you want to become a mental health first aider?
The body and the mind are inextricably linked, and as a part time yoga teacher I help my students establish and strengthen this connection with a view to improving overall wellbeing. We all know that we should prioritise our health, yet most of us don’t do so sufficiently for all sorts of reasons – habit being one of the main ones! Mental health is much less tangible, and there still tends to be a big disconnect between mental and physical health. As a society we must continue to work towards putting mental health and physical health on par, and I feel I can contribute to making this happen by being a mental health first aider in my workplace. Small steps lead to big changes!
What does Mental Health Day mean to you?
It’s great that there is a specific day dedicated to this hot topic, every year there are more initiatives and campaigns, all of which help to increase exposure. It’s a much needed reminder that we should be working towards improving, maintaining, and in some cases, restoring good mental health, yet this is a continuous process that requires constant effort. It’s the little things you do each day that make a difference.
What are three things that can help reduce stress at work?
Stress is exacerbated by lack of sleep and poor nutrition, to name a few of the main contributing factors. So in the first instance, commit to prioritising your health. It’s the most valuable thing to a person’s life and people don’t realise that until they don’t have it anymore. Simple things to do include making sure you take a lunchbreak, rather than eating your meal while answering emails. Spend this time away from your desk, and move often throughout your working day – take a walk in the fresh air during your break if you can. Limit checking your work inbox after hours, or while on holiday. A good work/life balance is essential to maintaining good mental health.
For further information about this article please contact Christine Maier on email@example.com