May is National Mental Health Awareness Month, a time to shine a light on the challenges that many individuals face in the workplace. Mental health tends to be stigmatized among folks in manufacturing and other labor-intensive jobs, where people like to keep up a “tough guy” front, but this can cause serious problems if mental health concerns go unchecked.
In fact, according to a study done several years ago, the manufacturing and production industry has the highest rate of death by suicide in the U.S. ArcelorMittal takes the mental health of its employees seriously and aims to create a healthy work environment, not just physically, but mentally.
Take care of yourself at work. Here’s a few ways you can reduce your stress and improve your mental health:
The time you spend at your workstation can be isolating. Do you ever come in and work your entire shift without ever speaking to another person? Even the most introverted and socially awkward people need community. Take breaks and talk to the rest of the crew on shift. It can release stress and clear the fog in your mind.
Our physical wellbeing impacts our mental health. If your back hurts, you have a crick in your neck, or your sciatica nerve is flaring up, take a minute to do some stretches and loosen that tension. Walk it out, outdoors if possible, so you can grab some Vitamin D from the sun and some fresh air to fill your lungs and clear your head.
It can be tempting to escape to your truck for your lunch break and get away from everyone else, but eating with other people can provide a much-needed break from the stress and isolation of your job. Share a laugh and a meal, maybe even drive together to grab a quick lunch somewhere. It’ll be good for your soul.
Often, employees only use their sick days when they’re coughing up a lung or too sick to get out of bed, but sick days are there to address your mental health, too. If you feel like you’ve been flying off the handle an awful lot over little things, can’t pull yourself out of the dumps, or just feel overwhelmed by all of the stress life is throwing at you, take a mental health day. Don’t be afraid to ask for professional help, either—think of a counselor or a therapist as just one more healthcare professional who is there to help you be well.
Job insecurity that comes with jumping from place to place increases levels of anxiety, stress, and depression, which can lead to self-harm. If you are able to find the right job and give the place your best, it can go a long way in helping you find stability.
But even more than that, a good job gives you a sense of purpose and meaning. That’s what we believe sets ArcelorMittal apart from other manufacturers. Our head of R&D, Greg Ludkovsky, has a lot to say about teamwork, risk-taking, and having fun at work. This culture permeates everything we do.
If you’re looking for a healthier work environment, explore opportunities to work at ArcelorMittal.« Back to Blog