How to Build Upon Mental Health Awareness Week 2020

Each year The Mental Health Foundation sets the theme for Mental Health Awareness Week. The theme for years Mental Health Awareness week has been kindness. Throughout this week we’ve been sharing articles and posts related to kindness in the workplace on our social media channels. As the week comes to an end we’ve shifted our focus to how to build upon Mental Health Awareness Week. We’ve seen businesses really embrace Mental Health Awareness Week this year and come up with creative ways to show their commitment whilst working remotely. At The Peachy Mind we want to make sure the great work promoting Mental Well-being and Kindness doesn’t end there.

We’d like to share five ways to keep the conversation going and embed kindness within your organisation.

1. Ask for Feedback

Asking your team for feedback about Mental Health Awareness Week will be invaluable. Simple question such as: What do you feel we did well in supporting Mental Health Awareness Week? What would you have liked to have seen more of? What did you find helpful/unhelpful about our approach to Mental Health Awareness Week? Just a few simple questions can provide valuable insight into ways of integrating more kindness into your workplace and how to refine your well-being offering going forwards. Asking for feedback also serves the purpose of demonstrating your ongoing commitment to Mental Well-being in the Workplace and shows that you value their opinion and input.

2. Clarity is Kind

If there are difficult conversations to have or challenging messages to communicate it can be tempting to think that being fuzzy with what we’re saying is in someway softening the blow and being kinder. Being clear is kindness in action. Being unclear supports uncertainty and ambiguity and gives rise to misinterpretation and uncertainty. This can lead to increased stress and anxiety.

3. Reward Kindness

How do you reward kindness? There is a saying that ‘Kindness is its own reward’ but often in organisations, although we may appreciate kindness we fail to reward it. If kindness is something you’d like to promote within your workplace you need to consider how it is rewarded. It is important to recognise and reward the behaviours you would like to support and encourage.

4. Meaningful Action

If you receive feedback in relation to Mental Health Awareness take meaningful action based upon it. Communicate what you are going to do and why you are going to do it. This demonstrates your ongoing commitment to improving mental well-being in your workplace and also shows you have really listened to the feedback and that it has made an impact. When you can demonstrate to employees that their feedback effects change within your organisation they feel valued and are more likely to be engaged with Mental Well-being initiatives in the future.

5. Start With You

Whatever your position within your organisation continuing to be kind towards yourself and others will have a positive impact on your mental well-being. Kindness can reduce stress and anxiety as well as improving self-esteem and helping to build healthy relationships. By starting with you the kindness will ripple out to others and be returned, as the people around you begin to be kinder to others.

‘ No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted’ – Aesop