Balancing Work and Mental Health

A major part of adolescence and young adulthood is finding and keeping a job. When struggling with anxiety or depression, this can create obstacles to being successful in your work. Many questions can arise: What is needed to support your mental health? Should you tell your employer? If so, how much should I disclose? Recently, Time Magazine posted an article outlining tips for finding a balance between your mental health and your job:

  • To start, it is important that you know your rights! They state, “If you can do your job but need some flexibility or specific accommodations, you’re most likely entitled to receive them.” Psychological disabilities are covered under the Americans With Disabilities Act. Requests for accommodations can usually be made to the company’s Human Resources department. The article links to a sample letter to start this process.

    Photo Credit: DiariVeu - laveupv.com Flickr via Compfight cc

    Photo Credit: DiariVeu – laveupv.com Flickr via Compfight cc

  • The article also recommends considering the work environment before disclosing mental health concerns. Unfortunately, stigma exists in work environments. It is important to protect yourself from any harm that might be caused by speaking on your mental health concerns. If it turns out you think more harm than good would come of talking about your mental health, it might be best to find another place to work that is more respectful of mental health.
  • Lastly, the article recommends some flexibility. It’s important to find that balance between meeting the needs of the job without sacrificing your wellbeing. This might require some discussion between you and your employer, so it’s important to be flexible and find a compromise that fits the needs on both sides.

If you’re interested in reading more tips, take a look at the article!

Do you have any experience with juggling a mental health concern and work? We’d love to hear any tips you have in the comments below!

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Hi! The moderator is a research team member with a background in behavioral health. We're here to help answer your questions and stimulate some great conversation! We don't provide therapy and are not available 24-7 so please if you are in crisis, go to our crisis page: https://sova.pitt.edu/i-need-help-now We look forward to talking to you!

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