According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), 526,000 workers in the UK suffered from work-related stress, depression or anxiety in 2016/17, and 12.5m working days were lost as a result over that period. A survey of 3,000 workers conducted by an employee benefits platform found that work was the biggest cause of stress, followed by family pressures (45%) and money worries (45%).
The number of fit notes issued for mental health conditions, including workplace induced stress and anxiety, have been on the rise for a number of years. They accounted for a third of all fit notes written by GPs in England between December 2014 and March 2017. Chronic workplace stress can lead to a wide range of negative health outcomes, from physical health issues to signs of anxiety, depression and low mood.
Overwork was given as the biggest reason for workplace strain, and a significant percentage of respondents turned to stimulants such as caffeine and alcohol to help them manage.
Supporting the call for better mental health care, the National Council for Hypnotherapy says that about one in seven people are suffering from stress or anxiety at any one time in the UK currently. And while some people manage, more and more people are struggling with significant impacts on the quality of life and well-being.
There are many practical steps you can take to help you cope better with workplace stress including seeking out and building supportive relationships both inside and out of work, making sure you are eating and sleeping well and exercising regularly. If these steps are not enough to alleviate your stress, the NCH is well-placed to assist with over 1,800 registered hypnotherapists who can teach you tools and help you work through your problem.
A hypnotherapist can help assess your anxiety, identifying the root of stress or anxiety and helping you to set goals for how you would like to feel and the things you would choose to do in your life if you were free of the stress and anxiety. They will then work with you to reach your goals using a range of different techniques. Every therapist may use slightly different techniques, but working towards the same goal.
Stress is one of the major reasons people take time off work and, by investing in stress reduction schemes, companies can increase productivity, happiness and subsequently loyalty in their employees, comments the NCH.
Many hypnotherapists offer special offers to businesses for stress reduction schemes at work. It is worth talking to your employer or to a local hypnotherapist to see if that this is a possibility.