Work is actually bad for your health. All joking aside, work can cause so many problems for the average employee that it can literally make them sick. Stress in the work place is incredibly difficult to manage for many people. If you’re an employer, and you have people working for you who either have disabilities or suffer from mental health issues that can be called disabilities, the worst thing you can do is to ignore the possibility that you may be adding to the problems with stress. In this post we will look at the issue of stress in the workplace, and consider the extent of the damage it can bring.

Stress does have a huge impact upon mental health. Around 1 in 5 people suffer from anxiety due to stress in the workplace. Around 10% of people – commonly males – have suicidal thoughts due to stress being triggered by the workplace. So from these two figures alone you should be able to see the impact of stress on employees.

Around one in five people feel that they could never approach their employer if they were feeling stressed. This is the case even if that employee feels that the stress is taking over and affecting their working life. This means that the stress would be so pronounced that it negatively impacts upon their productivity and also their ability to complete simple work tasks. The fact that they cannot approach their employer about this issue is very damaging. Even if the employee feels that they are managing aspects of their stress, they still have the added problem of feeling that they’re not being listened to or that they cannot talk to anyone about this rather serious problem.

Dealing with stress in the wrong way

Research shows that people who suffer from stress in the workplace often ‘find a way’ that they can deal with it. This could mean something as simple as going for an extra drink after work. Some people, however, turn to drinking during the working day to manage their stress levels. This is obviously highly damaging, and can have a huge impact, not only on the persons life but also the productivity and the effectiveness of the workplace overall.

We will look further at the issue of stress in the workplace and how it relates to mental health in future posts. However, it is important to note that there is a lot of value in employers talking to their employees about the stress they may be suffering, because this discussion will help the employee to both deal with the stress and also move forward so that they are able to take on their work duties quickly and effectively.

Stress is a mental health issue, and is therefore part of disability. Employers need to recognise this and open up communication channels with their employees who are suffering from this particular condition.

Chris Catt

The Enabled Entrepreneur

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