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Stress - are we coping? Let’s talk about it during Mental Health Awareness Week 2018

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Stress is increasingly becoming a part of everyday life. But when people are overwhelmed by stress it may lead to mental health problems, or make existing problems worse.

Mental Health Awareness Week (14 to 20 May 2018) will shine a light on how stress can contribute to mental health problems and how we can cope with it.

Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (LPFT) is doing all it can to let people know that support is readily available for anyone struggling with mental health problems across the county.

The Trust is focusing on helping employees and employers create a healthy workplace where everyone feels valued and supported.

Nikki Gibson, Clinical Lead at LPFT Staff Wellbeing Service said:

Mental Health Awareness Week 2018 is a great opportunity to think about how we can all address the causes of work-related stress. Employers can support their staff with managing and preventing stress by improving conditions at work and often making simple adjustments to help the person manage the problem.

Some of the key things that will support wellbeing include positive team culture, supportive managers and keeping staff involved and informed about organisational changes.

If someone is experiencing stress at work they can try different coping techniques including mindfulness, learning to ask for help and saying no, adopting a positive mindset and most of all being honest about how they feel to people they work with.

 

Dr Dave Baker, GP and Chair, South West Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group said:

This year’s Mental Health Awareness Week is the perfect opportunity to really build on the increasing levels of awareness around the importance of mental health.  In conjunction with the great work LPFT is doing across Lincolnshire, I urge everyone, particularly employers, to look at work-related stress and what can be done to prevent/manage this.

 

LPFT’s talking therapies service - steps2change is available to help and support people struggling with stress and common mental health problems such as anxiety and depression. steps2change run a dedicated coping with stress course which helps to introduce techniques to manage and overcome problems. This service is free and people can self-refer by visiting www.steps2change.nhs.uk

 

Tips on how to beat stress:

  • What is it that stresses you at work – could you ask others for help or delegate? Maybe there’s some additional training that would benefit you? Most of all speak to your manager to make them aware of how you feel.
  • Look after your own health, plan regular breaks in your work day and time off work throughout the year.
  • Be organised as this will help to reduce your stress levels. Don’t overcommit yourself or try to cram too much into your work day. Be realistic about what you can achieve.
  • Don’t feel guilty if you have to say no to someone at work.
  • Be mindful of what you eat as balanced diet will support your wellbeing. Don’t eat in a rush or on the go. Do not drink alcohol as a way of coping with stress.
  • Physical activity is a great way to manage stress – whether you walk, cycle, run or do yoga – as long as you enjoy it – keep doing it.
  • Make time for your hobbies and things you enjoy. When we’re stressed we often lose the sight of bigger picture and what matters in life.
  • Seek professional help if you have tried self-help and you feel that stress is still taking over your life.