Tips for Improving and Promoting Positive Mental Health

A smiling young woman sitting on a couch at home and working on a laptop computer

In today’s workplace, we’re often focused on productivity. How can we do things better, faster and more efficiently? Often, we turn to new technology or other external tools. Better mental health isn’t usually on the list. Yet it plays an important role in creating an efficient and collaborative work environment.

Benefits of better mental health at work

For some, work can be a place of stress. And a bit of stress is fine. The problems come when we enter long-term stress cycles. These can wreak havoc on our minds and bodies.

Taking steps to promote mental well-being at work can:

  • Reduce stress and burnout
  • Reduce turnover
  • Cut down on absenteeism
  • Boost efficiency
  • Promote collaboration and creativity

Here are five practical tips to start improving your mental health:

1.      Explore flexibility

Choosing where and when you work can go a long way towards improving mental health. Skipping the commute can create more time for family, recreation and hobbies. Flexibility to work when you’re most productive and creative can increase performance and efficiency, making for a happier you and a happier employer. If you don’t have flexible work options at your workplace, explore options like flextime, 4/10 schedules or job sharing, along with the possibility of remote working, with your employer.

2.      Create social connections

Researchers say social isolation has the same impact as smoking 15 cigarettes a day. It’s also been linked to higher levels of burnout. Even if you work remotely, consider joining or starting a weekly team coffee break or even a quarterly social gathering. There are simple things you can do every day to stay connected, too. Keeping your camera on in virtual meetings, checking in with colleagues and staying curious and engaged in your work can also help you build and strengthen connections.

3.      Develop yourself personally and professionally

Family, jobs, community, hobbies and volunteering can all add meaning to your life. Developing new skills, talents and passion can help you find your place and what you most enjoy doing. When you do work that fulfills you and that you excel at, everyone benefits. Talk with your supervisor about opportunities to develop yourself personally and professionally through programming, conferences, classes, volunteering and more.

4.      Take advantage of free mental health tools

Online therapy programs and resources that address stress, depression and anxiety are available. Your BCBSND group plan includes access to Learn to Live, an online therapy system with modules to address stress, depression, anxiety and other issues, along with an online wellness center, coaching, daily habit tools and more.

Visit the Learn to Live website or download our app (use the code BLUEND) to get started. If you’re already a member, login to your account to continue or start a new program.

5.      Resilience—our secret weapon

Resilience is the ability to keep going when the going gets tough. Taking care of your mind and body and building a strong support network can help you get through hard times.

Getting involved in your local community and work community are good places to start. Consider joining a community sports league, a gym or a club for walking, running or cycling. You can even explore options for starting a corporate team or club with your employer.

By using these simple strategies, you can improve our overall well-being so that you shine, both at work and at home.

Check out all the tools BCBSND offers to help you get engaged with your own well-being

If you’re worried about yourself or a loved one, trained counselors are ready now. The National Suicide and Crisis Lifeline is free, confidential and open 24/7. Call or text 988, or chat at

Sources: Fortune, Gallup, McKinsey

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