An incredible article entitled “We need to Talk about Men’s Mental Health at Work” describes the real challenges for men around self-stigma and social stigma in discussing mental health. It provides ways for managers to see signs and proactively help by building a climate of psychological safety and vulnerability.
Some of the tips include demonstrating vulnerability in 1 on 1s, reframing “seeking help” as a sign of strength and leadership competence, and avoiding the use of words like “depression, sadness” INSTEAD “recovering from burnout,” “developing mental fitness, resilience, and strength.”
The statistics are alarming with only 25% of men stating they would seek help from mental health professionals while suicide rates for men are 3.6x more than women. The article also illustrates some signs to help managers with at-risk employees.
At Fierce we have focused heavily on providing the tools to eliminate stress through interpersonal communication skills that build resilience. We have seen signs of initial resistance consistent with this article that quickly go away in 1 on 1 coaching sessions because we are focused on hard tangible biometric data that focuses on specific events that are driving stress and immediately pivot towards action. Our results across demographics consistently show 9-10% drop in stress within two weeks from the coaching session.
We commend HBR and the author for addressing this often-ignored topic.
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