It’s been a weird time in the workplace for many of us. With the pandemic changing the face of how we work (with many people working from home and the challenges to mental health that this poses), it is interesting to hear that many people suffer from loneliness in the workplace even when things are running ‘normally’. There have been a few studies in recent times about the weight of loneliness generally but also specifically how it manifests in the workplace and the reasons behind it. Much of this can be pinpointed to job satisfaction and the type of job that a person finds fulfilling, but there is obviously a lot more to it than just that and there are ways in which we can all tackle loneliness in the workplace before it becomes something much bigger and harder to comprehend.
There is a strong link between how lonely a person feels and the state of their mental health. If you feel lonely and particularly isolated in the workplace, this is more likely to have a detrimental impact on your mental health. Likewise, if you have a mental health problem you are more likely to suffer from loneliness. Even the most confident person on the face of it, can become withdrawn and isolated when suffering from anxiety and depression.
Many people who have felt lonely in the workplace have talked of feeling stressed a lot of the time and suffering from poor mental health as a result. You often see this in more causal job roles, temporary contracts or within season work. Every person suffers from some level of stress from time to time, but if it becomes the norm this is not a good thing for both your physical and mental health. Coping with day to day symptoms of mental illness might take different forms but choosing where to work and how to cope in the workplace can go a long way to helping a person who is suffering, to improve their mental wellbeing.
One of the best ways to improve your mental health is to work for a company that truly does have your best interests at heart. This could mean looking for a new job with a company that understands the need for a healthy workspace, with open channels of communication that allow for a healthy balance of work and leisure time. Trust is always a big issue for a happy workplace, and this can help ward off loneliness and help build morale and positive work mental health for all employees.
Working in an office and feeling lonely, or working from home and becoming isolated, can both impact on our mental health. Learning about triggers of loneliness and depression in the workplace is a great start to working out processes and approaches that can help us look after our mental wellbeing and overall health. One of the first things you can do if you are unhappy and feel lonely in the workplace, is to think about what it is you want from your job and your career. If you feel you would be better served looking for a new role and a change of career, look for a specialist recruitment agency that can help you get to where you want, and need, to be in your life. There are other techniques and tips to help you ward off loneliness in the workplace and in your general life, and it is by no means never beyond repair if you are feeling low and lonely.