Of all the seasons, winter may be the hardest on our mental health. According to a 2018 study, half of Canadians report the lowest level of happiness during the winter months, when we tend to hunker down indoors, connecting less with our communities, with nature and with loved ones.
Now, tie that to the despair and anxiety experienced by Canadians since the pandemic hit, and this winter may be the hardest one yet. In fact, over 70% of Canadians expressed worry during the second wave of the pandemic, and 40% of Canadians reported that their mental health had deteriorated since March 2020.
When it comes to working, many of us are having trouble being motivated and productive. Plus, loneliness is on the rise, and people are feeling disconnected. Whether you are working on the frontlines or from your kitchen table, everyone is in new territory, with unique stressors affecting work.
Now’s the time for employers to make mental health and well-being a priority.
A mini-guide to supporting your employees through the COVID winter:
The mini-guide offers insights into common challenges Canadians are facing, and provides a set of tools for employers to respond in their own workplaces.
In the guide, you can find:
- Reasons why winter and the pandemic are challenging for people
- Different strategies to cope
- How employers can use empathy to support their employees
- Tips to make working from home physically and psychologically safe
- Types of psychological and social support that can help reduce stress at work
- How to support flexibility and balance in the workplace
- Additional resources that can help support well-being in the workplace
You can access the full guide here.
The mini guide can be used outside the workplace to help anyone – you, your friends, family members and neighbours. And the coping strategies can help in any context, not only the pandemic.
You can access other guides, toolkits, webinars and resources from the Mental Health Commission of Canada here.
To access other blog articles from CMHA National, click here.