The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that more than 350 million people in the world suffer from depression. This makes the condition the most common illness globally and the leading cause of disability. It can be simply defined as persistent feelings of sadness and loss of interest.
Depression in the workplace is the most common type. According to Mental Health America, it ranks among the top three workplace problems. Depression at work is also one of America’s most costly illnesses; in fact, it is as costly as a heart disease or AIDs to the US economy.
Unfortunately, most employees who suffer from this problem fear to speak out because of the stigma associated with mental diseases. More worrying is that most of them don’t even know they have the illness in the first place.
Unlike other forms, workplace depression is very hard to deal with. You can’t ignore it by sleeping the whole day or drinking yourself silly. You need to perform. There is also that risk of co-workers noticing that you are going through some shit. But this condition, just like most diseases, is treatable. I am going to guide you on how you can overcome workplace depression and go back to leading a normal life again. Here is how to deal with depression at work.
Recognize the symptoms
Most people with mental problems live in self-denial. They wait until it is too late before seeking help. However, there are those telltale signs that will tell you that you are suffering from this condition.
Do you always struggle to get out of bed when you need to go to work? Are you always tired all the time? Do you often call in sick even when you are not sick? These are symptoms of workplace depression. You don’t need to live like this because help is readily available. Other symptoms are having difficulties in concentration, remembering things and making decisions.
A change of environment might help
Poor lighting, dull colors, poor ventilation are all environmental factors that could be having an impact on your personality and thus causing the depression. Perhaps a change in environment will help you recuperate and come back a normal person. If your work permits you to work from home, then request that from your employer. You can also ask for a transfer to another branch if you have any. Most often, a change in environment is the best way of dealing with depression at work.
Consider a timeout
Depression and work performance are directly related. A depressed person will not perform optimally. Sometimes the pressure associated with big workloads and having to beat timelines may overwhelm even the most enduring persons. You may also be having this problem because you are just too tired and fatigue. In such a situation, you need a mental health break. You can ask your boss for some time off to get air.
Talk to someone
Trust me, sharing your problem with someone works wonders. You should reach out to friends and family about your condition, you may just be surprised at the help you will get.
Depression can be genetic and there could be a probability that a person in your family may have already gone through it. They may suggest ways about how they managed it. You can also talk to a colleague that you have a comfortable relationship with. It is good to have someone who understands you on a team because they will always have your back during stressful periods.
Seek Professional help
If you did not know, this problem is a chronic disease just like diabetes or AIDs. If you are a victim, then go to a doctor. It is hard to deal with clinical depression at work. You should seek appropriate treatment from a qualified physician. This condition always requires counseling sessions, sometimes anti-depressant drugs or both. Your healthcare provider will recommend the best treatment for you.
Find your ‘antidote’
With the current competition in the job market, there is a probability that you will not have the luxury of taking time off until your depression is finally under control. You have to find a way of making things work because you may find yourself jobless if you don’t, that is the cruel reality. Fortunately, our bodies have been designed to adapt to different conditions and situations. Even though things are tough for you now, there is a way you can minimize depression from affecting your performance.
Most people who have dealt with the condition suggest on focusing on your work as a distraction. You don’t necessarily need to do the same, but you should find something that will distract you, the antidote to your problem. You can try doing things in a different way or change your schedule. You may find solace in things that make you happy.
Join a support Group
Like I said earlier, this problem affects very many people. It is just that most of them don’t come out. You can join a group of people dealing with depression and share your experiences together. I am sure you will learn something about your condition from sharing. If there is o support group available, you can create one. There are also several online communities that you can be part of.
Talking to your boss is your decision
It majorly depends on the type of organization you work with and the relationship you have with your boss. Most companies know that depression at work is a major problem and have employee assistance programs to deal with the problem. If you feel like there is something that can be done by your boss to change the current situation then talk to them and see what they have to say.
Know when to quit
Some workplaces are just hostile to operate in. Workplace depression is mostly a sign that something is not right. And if the causes are not addressed, you will always deal with work-related depression. You should value yourself and know that as long as you are doing your job well, another opportunity will always arise. Here are some things that you should not tolerate at your workplace because they mean hell for your mental health;
- Bullying at the workplace happens so often, and if this is the cause of your depression then you have to run for your dear life.
- Another cause of depression is when someone takes credit for your job. Just quit.
- Never allow being punished for mistakes committed by others.