Harnessing the Power of Learning on World Mental Health Day 2023

The World Mental Health Day 2023 theme is “Mental Health is a Universal Human Right.” You can make your workplace more supportive by training managers and employees on mental health awareness and wellness topics.

One surprising side effect of the pandemic was the overall increase in awareness of mental health issues – personally and in the workplace.

Mental health issues are still widespread, though, with an estimated 25 to 27 per cent increase in the prevalence of depression and anxiety around the world post-pandemic. This makes the theme that the World Foundation of Mental Health established for World Mental Health Day 2023 – “Mental health is a universal human right” – more important than ever.

The theme focuses on the fundamental principle that every individual, regardless of their background, should have equal access to mental health care, support, and resources. Just like physical well-being, we need to have access to resources and care that give us the tools and techniques to maintain our mental health and to help us when we’re struggling.

Post-Pandemic Mental Health Challenges

In the workplace, we’ve seen a tremendous shift towards prioritizing mental health, with employees and managers at the best companies working together to ensure that no one is left behind in their journey toward improved well-being and resilience.

But post-pandemic, there’s been a sharp uptick in those suffering from, or living with, mental health conditions. The statistics for the US alone are frightening.

  • 21% of U.S. adults experienced a mental health condition in 2020.
  • 5.6% of U.S. adults experienced a serious mental health condition in 2020, which is often defined as a psychotic disorder, bipolar disorder or a severe anxiety or eating disorder that significantly impairs functioning.
  • The impact depression and anxiety has lost the global economy a reported $1 trillion in productivity each year.
  • The percentage of U.S. adults receiving mental health treatment rose from 19.2% in 2019 to 21.6% in 2021.

(Source: Forbes Health, last visited Sept 2023)

Mental health experts agree that, to address the mental health crisis, institutions and individuals need to remove barriers and reduce stigma to foster personal and work environments where mental wellbeing is not only recognized as a fundamental human right, but also actively promoted and protected. Knowing this, how can we take actionable steps to make mental health a priority in our workplaces?

While more systemic changes must occur to address how mental healthcare is provided to individuals, we can do our part within our organizations to provide training that helps our employees recognize their own and others’ mental health challenges.

Providing mental health related training online is especially beneficial for reaching remote, agile, or casual workers with the skills and information they need to provide safer and healthier workplaces. Online learning also allows your employees and managers to engage with mental health awareness courses and materials at their own pace, which means that they can identify, share, and care for their own mental health on their terms.

Improving Mental Health and Mental Health Awareness at Work

Managers can gain essential mental health knowledge and skills, while fostering a supportive, stigma-free culture amongst their employees, by offering and participating in mental health trainings. All employees across an organization should have access to these resources, whether they are remote, part-time, or contracting.

Litmos has a new range of online courses in 2023, designed to help build the skills and knowledge we all need to improve our mental health.

  1. Leading Learning – Mental Health at Work

    Awareness is the first step, and the Leading Learning course, Mental Health at Work is an excellent resource for all employees, helping them to be aware of their own mental health issues, build resilience and know when it’s a good time to share their challenges and get help. Explore “Leading Learning – Mental Health at Work

  2. Leading Learning – Managing Mental Health and Wellbeing

    If you’re a manager and want to learn the essentials of managing and maintaining good mental health, you can check out Leading Learning – Managing Mental Health and Wellbeing. Explore “Leading Learning – Managing Mental Health and Wellbeing

  3. Leading Learning – Handling Personal Stress

    And there’s much, much, more, including Leading Learning – Handling Personal Stress with tips to keep on top of busy times and stressful situations. Explore “Leading Learning – Handling Personal Stress

  4. Psychosocial Risk Awareness – Focused on UK, Australia, and US Regions

    Litmos customers in the US, UK, and Australia can also access Psychosocial Risk Awareness courses, which can provide the knowledge both managers and employees need to recognize and minimize causes of the stresses of work and life in general.

    Take a look at the relevant courses for your region: Psychosocial Risk Awareness (UK), Psychosocial Risk Awareness (US), Psychosocial Risk Awareness for Employees (AU) and Psychosocial Risk Management (AU). The UK and US courses are based on the ISO 45003:2021 for Psychological health and safety at work – guidelines for managing psychosocial risks.

If having good mental health is recognized as a basic human right, we can all benefit from improving our knowledge and skills in this area. Giving your managers and employees training to spot the signs that they or others may be struggling is a great start.