Mind It’s Story – Wellbeing sessions to tackle burn-out
I have a personal story with burn-out. Both my parents have suffered from work-related mental health issues in the past: my father from depression and my mother from burn-out. Both because of relationship issues with their boss (some would call it ‘moral harassment’). I am truly aware of how hard it has been for them to recover professionally, and experienced the negative impacts this had on our family life. [Everyone is happy and healthy now – yes, mental health issues are not inevitable].
My parents are not an exception: Over 50% of full-time UK employees have experienced anxiety or burn-out in their current job (YouGov and Virgin survey, 2015. See Infographics ‘How stressed are UK employees?’).
What is Burn-out?
The first definition of burnout is ‘The reduction of a fuel or substance to nothing through use or combustion’ or ‘The failure of an electrical device or component through overheating’, and by extension ‘Physical or mental collapse caused by overwork or stress’ (Oxford Dictionnary). Reduction to nothing, failure, collapse…
Psychologist Herbert Freudenberger distinguished 12 phases within the burnout process (Journal of Social Issues #30, 1974, link Online Library). The first signs usually are working harder and longer hours, neglecting family and friends, not getting enough rest, and feeling the urge of ‘keep going no matter what’. The consequences on the person’s mental and physical health are tremendous: decrease in self-esteem, self-harm, denial, isolation, extreme unusual behaviour (over-eating or over-drinking for instance), depression.
>> Why are all those books about being well and personal development written by people who experienced burn-out themselves? Is there a path we could adopt to avoid driving on the heavy-consequences road of burn-out?
We created Mind It to prevent burn-out to happen
Mind It believes in prevention rather than cure. Mind It has been created to make corporate wellbeing easy in order to prevent mental and physical health issues in Leeds and Yorkshire’s workplaces. Many corporate organisations are aware of the need to implement a Wellbeing Strategy for their staff. However, most of them do not have the resources (time and skills) to do so.
Mind It has designed a holistic offer to help these companies in Yorkshire: 1. Mind It provides Wellbeing Checks to help companies realise the wellbeing state of their staff and design with them a dedicated Wellbeing Strategy. And 2, Mind It introduces these companies to the best qualified experts in their area (Yorkshire) to provide wellbeing workshops and sessions.
Mind It’s wellbeing activities cover all aspects: yoga, pilates, mindfulness, meditation, team-building sessions, cycling/running/walking groups, stress management workshops, crafting, singing…
At Mind It, our fight is to make prevention the norm in the corporate world:
For costs reasons: Prevention will always be cheaper than cure, inside and outside the corporate world [Just have a quick look at the tobacco industry]
For health reasons: mental health as well as physical health. If you take the example of burn-out, when you experienced one, you are more likely to experience a second one, a third one… avoiding the first one should be the key!
And for happiness reasons: taking the example of my family, I personally know how much the work of one parent can affect the whole family life. We don’t need statistics. Making sure employees are well at work would help them be well out of work, too.
As we like saying: 'Happiness is a serious business!'