Research has found there is clear evidence work is generally good for both our mental and physical health and wellbeing. When not working or out of work, this can lead to poor physical and mental health and this demonstrates that work can be a good therapy for us.
Work is good for us and when it is a mentally healthy and physically healthy workplace, this will improve productivity and engagement.
- The cost of mental ill health to the economy, NHS and society as a whole is £105 billion a year
- Mental health and physical wellbeing programmes can save approximately 30% of these costs.
With an increase in anxiety and depression at work, most senior managers are often unaware of the extent of the problem and some do not realise that it is affecting their workplaces.
Managers do need effective training and support at work according to a recent survey on how to effectively manage staff with stress and experiencing mental health problems. Almost every day there are opportunities to support people experiencing mental health problems which would enable them to access the appropriate treatment and maintain their employment. Unfortunately, these opportunities are being missed in workplaces across the UK.
Of course, the job should be classed as a ‘good’ job and not one with many problems leading to high levels of sickness absence and poor performance. ‘Good’ work is better for us and there are many factors which make up a good job such as managing stress effectively, good communication, job security, safe at work, good self-esteem, motivated and satisfied.
Work can have many benefits, whether as a volunteer or in paid work, the benefits will be the same. It can give us:
- Social interaction
- Support from our co-workers
- Give as a focus
- Money to improve our lifestyle and improve our wellbeing
- Benefits such as membership to a gym whether at a reduced rate or on the premises
- Help us be mentally active and improve ourselves
- A sense of pride and achievement
‘Everyone has a right to work, to free choice of employment, to just and favourable conditions of work and to protection against unemployment’.
Article 23 of the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights