Balancing Ambition and Mental Health

In the era of the Great Resignation and quiet quitting, ambition can feel like a dirty word. Many people have realized that having a positive mindset can help improve mental health. In October, the US Surgeon General declared mental health a public health priority following the pandemic. According to studies, chasing extrinsic goals can trigger depression and anxiety.

 

Despite the negative effects of chasing goals, it’s still possible to maintain a positive mindset and achieve inner peace. According to researchers, the key to achieving this is to focus on a goal that serves your well-being.

 

Despite the negative effects of chasing goals, ambition isn’t always bad for mental health. In 2012, a study revealed that more ambitious people were more likely to have successful careers. However, this didn’t prove that having a high level of ambition was related to life satisfaction. 

 

The target of your ambition can have a stronger impact on your mental health. According to studies, people motivated by extrinsic factors such as status, wealth, and fame are not as fulfilled as those motivated by intrinsic factors like knowledge, personal growth, and relationships. Tim Kasser, a professor emeritus at Knox College, explained that reaching an extrinsic goal can briefly satisfy one, but it’s not always long-lasting.

 

Retraining your ambition can help you feed instead of harming your mental health. There are several proven ways to do this, and you can start by practicing.

 

Stay Connected

Having an ambitious goal can negatively affect your mental health because it can prevent you from fully satisfying yourself. If you’re not able to fully satisfy yourself, it can take a toll on your mental health. Be sure to set aside time in your routine to connect with your friends and family; this will help keep you grounded and build a stable foundation from which to pursue your ambitions.

 

Stay in the Moment

According to research, people who are more focused on achieving for their own sake will feel more fulfilled. Instead of striving for a promotion or raise, they will be able to achieve more by mastering a task or creating a positive change for their community.

 

Grow Consistently

If you’re not focused on achieving for yourself, try adopting a growth mindset. It’s better to focus on developing a skill or learning something that you can use to improve yourself instead of setting goals that require getting a certain salary or job title.

 

Practice Mindfulness and Gratitude

One study found that people who practiced meditation regularly were more satisfied with their lives and had better well-being. Another study revealed that regular reflections on mortality and relationships could help improve mental health.

 

Don’t Make Everything a Business

According to researchers, attaching extrinsic rewards, such as cash, to activities that people enjoy can decrease their motivation to continue doing them. If your goal is psychological satisfaction, then you might be better off without the extra money.

Techniques for Avoiding Burnout

Burnout is a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion that occurs when you have long-term stress. It can affect your performance and prevent you from working properly. Burnout can manifest itself in different ways: Being defeated or trapped, isolating yourself from loved ones, and changing your eating habits.

 

According to a survey, over 70% of workers have experienced burnout. The increasing number of people working from home also contributes to this issue. It’s important to find a healthy balance between your home life and work.

 

Schedule Breaks

It’s important to take breaks to relieve stress. Doing so can help prevent burnout and keep you focused on your goals.

 

If you’re working on a project that you’re passionate about, then it’s important to take a break from your work to finish it. Whether cleaning the house or running a podcast, you might be setting yourself up for burnout if you’re constantly on the go.

 

Getting enough rest and refueling are two of the most important factors your body and mind need to perform at their best. If you don’t allow yourself time to recharge and get ready to go back to work, then you won’t be able to perform at your best.

 

Stay Organized

Do you spend a lot of time checking off tasks that you feel like completing, even though you don’t have a clear plan for how you will do it? Having a routine can help prevent burnout.

 

Most people find it easier to organize their time by determining how much energy they have. They tend to work when they feel motivated and when they can focus. For those who work from home, completing tasks based on their energy levels can be very productive.

 

Create a Workspace

If you struggle to keep up with your work, consider the space that you use. Having an optimized work area can help you get more done. Whether you work from home or in a building, it’s important to create a space that’s designed to encourage efficiency.

 

You can create a space that’s designed to reflect your personality and make you feel excited to work. You can also add various accessories, such as plants and inspirational quotes, to make your work area more fun.

 

Prioritize

One of the most common reasons why people get burned out is because they don’t prioritize their tasks. Instead of focusing on the important things, they tend to focus on the wrong things.

 

It’s important to prioritize your time so that you can avoid wasting it on useless tasks. There are many ways that you can do this, and it will allow you to see how you can use your time more effectively.

 

One of the most important steps that you can take to prevent burnout is to take a break from technology and screens. Having too much screen time can negatively affect your sleep schedule and cause you to feel anxious about missing out.

 

It’s also important to set healthy boundaries with your family and friends so that you can avoid feeling guilty about taking time away from work. Having a break from work can help you feel better about yourself and your mental health.

 

Being able to avoid burnout can help boost your productivity and mental health. It can also affect your life in various ways. Having the proper tools and strategies to manage your stress can help keep it from becoming a recurring issue.

 

How Managers Can Support the Mental Health of Employees

According to the non-profit organization Mind Share Partners, which conducted a study with Qualitrics and SAP, the mental health of around 42% of participants declined since the pandemic began. This is a result of the structural changes that COVID-19 caused in the workforce. As a result, for example, countless people were instructed to work from home. And 44% of them experienced a decline in mental health.

 

Employee assistance programs, which are offered by many companies in the United States, have existed for many years. And before the pandemic began, employers were starting to pay attention to the mental health of their employees. But the pandemic has demonstrated that more needs to be done. And this is where management can play an important role.

 

Prior to the pandemic, Roche Genentech, a biotech firm, became viral when its leaders started talking about their own mental health. In fact, the company’s business leaders trained a group of employees on the subject of mental health awareness. Suddenly, remote workers were also participating and making videos of themselves. Business leaders who talk about their daily challenges appeal more to their workers. Employees like to feel a sense of community. Simultaneously, managers that talk about their habits have more of an impact.

 

This is why flexibility is important. And in these challenging times, it is important to be both proactive and inclusive. While direct reports are important, it is also necessary to be aware of possible transitions and changes. For instance, some employees have children. Perhaps, single parents should be provided with different schedules. A mother that can create her own schedule could be more productive.

 

As for business leaders, they can create bigger impacts. For years, senior leaders of Verizon have been focusing on work culture. They have trained managers and leaders in workplace mental health. The focus was also on prevention. A healthy workforce is less predisposed in suffering from absenteeism. Also, it is important to communicate to employees about the resources that they have available. According to a study, around 46% of employees were not informed about their mental health resources. Also, some employees may not utilize their benefits because of a social stigma. This is why it is important to normalize the services through communication.              

Promoting Mental Health in the Workplace

Mental health in the workplace is as important as physical health. Furthermore, it can affect employee productivity and overall well-being. That is why it’s important to promote mental health in the workplace. Here are a few tips:

1. Create Health and Safety Guidelines That Include Mental Health
When setting up health and safety guidelines for your workplace, including mental health to help employees feel like their mental health is just as important as their physical health.

2. Encourage Employees to Take Mental Health Days
Mental health days are a great way for employees to recharge and take care of themselves. Encourage your employees to take them when they need them.

3. Enroll Employees in a Medical Assistance Program
A medical assistance program can help employees get the services they need. It can include access to mental health services and free or low-cost mental health care.

4. Create a Mental Health Task Force
A mental health task force is critical in the workplace. This task force can develop mental health policies and provide mental health education.

5. Provide Medical Training Sessions
Providing medical training sessions can help employees learn more about mental health. Consider topics like recognizing symptoms and getting help for various problems.

6. Facilitate a Conducive Working Environment
The working environment can have a big impact on mental health. Ensure your workplace is conducive by providing a comfortable workspace, flexible work hours, and a supportive work culture.

Promoting mental health in the workplace can also enhance production and reduce costs. Happy and content workers translate to a more efficient workplace, as everyone feels better equipped to manage their responsibilities and knows that their satisfaction matters to management. Mental health problems can lead to high costs for employers, absenteeism, and workers’ compensation claims. By promoting it in the workplace, employers can reduce these costs.

Furthermore, employees want to work for a company that values their mental health. By promoting mental health in the workplace, employers can attract and retain the best employees. Employees who feel supported are more likely to stay with a company, improving employee retention.

Mental health is important for the workplace. By promoting mental health in the workplace, employers can improve employee productivity, reduce costs, attract top talent, improve employee retention, and strengthen working relationships. Mental health in the workplace is essential for a thriving business.

The Role of Empathy in Leadership

Leaders are typically reckoned with their ability to inspire and motivate their subordinates. However, empathy is often overlooked as a critical factor ineffective leadership. Empathy is the ability to understand others and feel their feelings. Leaders need to have strong empathy for their employees, customers, and other stakeholders.

Understand the different types of empathy
There are five different types of empathy: social, emotional, cognitive, spiritual, and transactional. Each has its unique strengths and weaknesses. To be successful in empathizing with others, you need to understand the different types of empathy.

Have strong empathy for others
One of the ways to develop strong empathy is to understand others deeply. Leaders who can empathize with their employees, customers, and other stakeholders will be more successful in their leadership roles. Studies have shown that those who can empathize with others are more likely to succeed.

Use empathy to lead.
One of the most effective ways to become more empathetic is to use empathy when leading. Leaders who can understand and feel the emotions of their subordinates are usually more successful in leading. When you’re able to empathize with your employees, customers, and other stakeholders, you will lead with conviction and authority.

Stay calm under pressure.
When you’re under pressure, it’s easy to get caught up in the moment and forget your goals. It can be hard to maintain a cool head under high stress. Leaders who can stay calm and focus on their objectives are usually more successful in their businesses. When you’re under pressure, you must have a plan for handling the situation. Leaders who can remain calm and focused will be better able to handle difficult situations.

Create a safe and healthy work environment
One of the crucial things leaders can create is a safe and healthy work environment. This means ensuring that all employees feel secure and happy in their work environment. Leaders also need to be aware of the signs that an employee is feeling unsafe or uncomfortable at work. If you observe any of these signs, ensure that the employee feels safe and respected.

What are some common challenges leaders face when it comes to empathy?
Leaders often face challenges when it comes to empathy. For example, some leaders may not fully understand the feelings of others. Additionally, some leaders may not be comfortable talking about their own emotions. This can lead to misunderstandings and conflict. Leaders who can empathize with their employees, customers, and other stakeholders will better manage these relationships and lead their teams to success.

How can leaders create better communication between them and their employees?
Leaders can create better communication between them and their employees by understanding their feelings. Leaders can also be more understanding when it comes to employee grievances. When leaders can empathize with their employees, they’re more likely to work together productively.

Leaders need to have strong empathy for others to lead successfully. If they cannot do so, they will be unable to achieve their goals. Leaders also face challenges when it comes to empathy. In addition, they may not have a safe and healthy work environment to lead. Leaders can make a difference by implementing empathy-based leadership.

How Uncertainty Can Benefit You

The future is never set in stone. No matter how solid the possible outcome of an event might look, you can never truly know if it will actually happen or not. This uncertainty can actually be quite stressful to many people. Not knowing how things will turn out can create a lot of anxiety and make people fearful for their security and well-being. What might surprise you is that uncertainty can actually benefit you.

 

While unbridled optimism has its perks, modern society almost instills this expectation that people not only be happy but happy all the time. This can be a form of toxic positivity, and it also clashes hard with the fundamental truth about uncertainty about the future. People just can’t know that they’re going to be happy and safe 24/7 for the rest of their lives.

 

Many people even fall into the mindset of everything being bad or good and seeing the entire universe in black and white. The simplicity can offer psychological comfort, but it also means missing out on the exploration of grey areas that lay between. There are things that can be both good and bad but more one than the other. Some things in the universe are honestly just neutral.

 

Rain is a prime example. Yes, it can mean depressing weather, dark skies, flooding, and property damage. However, it also refills water supplies, gives people a free car wash, and hydrates trees, shrubs, flowers, and grass that need moisture in order to thrive and grow.

 

Facing uncertainty is a chance for growth. People who do it can become more psychologically and emotionally resilient with the challenges they face in life. It’s also a chance to explore the possibilities that the future holds for anyone wanting to embrace them. With the future unwritten, people can chart their own course as they move ahead.

 

When nothing is set in stone, everything is possible. While the anxious side of the human mind can immediately conjure up all kinds of unwanted things, a simple pivot into even mild levels of positivity can mean you start dreaming of things that you do want to happen. Some will be only a matter of prayer and luck, but others will be paths you can take deliberate steps down.

 

Visit NHCC.us for more on New Horizon Counseling Center and Herrick Lipton!

Falling Asleep While Feeling Anxious: Tips to Help

Everyone has experienced a period where they feel anxious and can’t fall asleep. There are many reasons for these periods, but it is important to fall asleep when feeling anxious because this will help you get back on track the next day. This article will discuss tips that people have found helpful in falling asleep while feeling anxious to find your solution.

 

Start by taking deep breaths. Hold it for three more, and let the breath out for another six seconds. Repeat this process until you feel relaxed enough to fall asleep. You can also try focusing on your heartbeat or counting down from 100 backward.

 

No matter how anxious you are feeling, don’t eat or drink anything that can dehydrate you. This includes caffeine and alcohol, both stimulants that will make it harder for your body to relax enough to fall asleep.

 

Do not let your mind wander. Try using a meditation app or listening to relaxing music while deep breathing and counting down from 100 for this technique to be effective. You can also think about other things going on in your life, but don’t stress yourself out by thinking about anything negative.

 

Do not look at your phone or tablet before bed. The blue light that these screens emit will keep you up longer than you think! If possible, try using a computer instead of a mobile device. Some people have found success in wearing blue blockers while drifting off to sleep as well! Either way, the goal is for your eyes to be relaxed when trying these different techniques.

 

Consider writing down your thoughts in a journal or diary for ten minutes before going to sleep. This can help you clear out any anxious feelings that may be preventing you from falling asleep because it helps put them into words instead of holding them inside your mind. You can also say your thoughts aloud or to a pet, but avoid doing this if you have someone sleeping next to you as it may wake them up!

 

If you still feel anxious after trying these steps, try to distract yourself by reading a book or listening to music. If that doesn’t work, get up and do some light stretching until your muscles are relaxed enough for sleep. You can also try herbal tea! There are many kinds available at the grocery store with different scents and flavors to help you relax. Try to think about something else until the anxiety subsides, or try writing down your thoughts in a journal which will be helpful for the next day.

 

If none of these options work, you can always try a hot bath or shower to help your body relax. Put some calming essential oils in the water along with something that smells good and has a light scent like lavender. This will help calm any anxiety you may be feeling while also helping yourself feel relaxed enough to fall asleep! Make sure those essential oils don’t contain any caffeine, as this could have the opposite effect.

Visit NHCC.us for more on New Horizon Counseling Center and Herrick Lipton!

Passive Aggressive Phrases to Avoid

Passive-aggressive language may feel like you are saying the right thing by disguising how you really feel. Unfortunately, it does more harm than good when people pick up on your true feelings. Using certain phrases can also chip away at your loved one’s self-esteem while making them question your honesty. Watching out for these common passive-aggressive phrases helps you to communicate more clearly.

“I Don’t Want to Be Rude, But…”

Just the fact that you are saying this tells the other person that you know you are being rude. This phrase also turns the negativity into the other person’s problem by making them feel like getting upset is wrong since you supposedly are just trying to help. If you feel the need to say this, then stop for a moment and think about whether or not the person needs to hear what you are about to tell them.

“You’re So Lucky to Win That Award”

There are times when being lucky is good. Winning the lottery is an example of having luck over earning an achievement through hard work. However, you never want to attribute someone’s promotion, sports award, or other achievements to pure luck. Try to mention something that you’ve noticed contributed to the success. At the very least, say that you are proud and congratulate them on their achievement.

“Stop Being so Sensitive”

This comment comes up as one of the most commonly used phrases that people say to their spouse or other family members. Saying this makes the issue the other person’s fault and discredits their emotions. It is normal for people to get upset or even cry during a disagreement. Asking why they are upset and working together to find ways to solve the problem works better than making them feel ashamed of their emotions.

“Well, if That’s What You Want to Do”

You can catch yourself using this phrase by listening to your tone. Not only are you likely using a snarky tone of voice, but this phrase is laden with judgment. You’re essentially saying that you don’t agree with the other person’s choice at all but will tolerate it. You’ll get a better result by stating your disinterest in an activity but letting the other person know you’ll do it. Or, you can ask them for alternative ideas until you find one that you can both agree on.

No one’s perfect, and it is likely that you’ll catch yourself saying these phrases occasionally. When you do, acknowledging the problem and rephrasing your thoughts works well for helping you to improve your communication. With some practice, you’ll soon notice the results of watching what you say as your relationships become more positive.

Visit NHCC.us for more on New Horizon Counseling Center and Herrick Lipton!

Diagnosing Adult ADHD

There are many things about living with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) that people don’t realize. This diagnosis conjures up images of a little child who isn’t able to be still. Most believe children eventually outgrow symptoms of ADHD. It is time for people to realize ADHD is a complicated disorder. Individuals will experience symptoms long into adulthood. It is common for individuals who had ADHD symptoms as a child to never be diagnosed or receive treatment. Experiencing ADHD symptoms can cause a variety of problems for an adult.

Executive Function Disorder

It is possible to describe ADHD symptoms as an executive function disorder. This is often referred to as the brain’s management system. It is what helps an individual to make priorities, set goals, and create plans then persist until they are completed. Executive function consists of three main components. They are the ability to control, the ability to pay attention, and prioritize. Individuals with ADHD struggle with each of these components.

Cause

The cause of ADHD is believed to be a deficit in the neuro-transmitters norepinephrine and dopamine. This condition causes individuals with ADHD to try to make up for the deficit by regularly engaging in behaviors that are dopamine-stimulating. They then experience constant mental or physical restlessness. ADHD is a condition that individuals are usually born with.

Subtypes

There are three subtypes of ADHD:

  • Inattentive-disorganized individuals who want mental stimulation
  • Individuals with impulsive ADHD who try to obtain stimulation within their physical environment
  • Individuals with a combination of ADHD subtypes and try to obtain stimulation with a mixture of the other two

Underemployed

It is common for individuals with ADHD to be underemployed based on their abilities. They may often struggle to perform at a position that fits them. These people struggle to keep up because they can’t multitask. They may not get projects done on time because of being distracted by a phone call or email, and more. People with ADHD are usually too busy trying to engage in mental or physical stimulation or exhausted from the effort to control their impulses. They often have no energy to focus.

Any person who believes they may have adult ADHD should try to get an evaluation. When this is done, people feel better. They can then develop ways to work through their struggles. There is a lot of confusion concerning how ADHD appears in adults. People who feel they may have ADHD need to find an expert who has significant experience with evaluating adults for ADHD.

Visit NHCC.us for more on New Horizon Counseling Center and Herrick Lipton!

Learning to Forgive: Tips on How

Forgiveness is a healing process. Research suggests that practicing forgiveness leads to less stress, lower levels of depression, better self-esteem, and more satisfaction in life. Though it’s beneficial, it’s not easy, especially if the hurt runs deep. If you want to forgive, you must do the work to move past your resentment and pain.

Decide to forgive. Make a commitment to the process. Keep in mind that forgiving doesn’t necessarily mean keeping someone in your life. You can forgive a toxic person without remaining in a relationship with him or her.

Process your emotions in positive ways. You’re allowed to be hurt. However, if you’re serious about forgiving the person who hurt you, you must move beyond the desire to hurt them back. Rather than lashing out or turning your pain inward on yourself, find healthy ways to cope. Talk to a therapist. Start an art journal. Take up a sport that gets your endorphins pumping.

Use the REACH method of forgiveness. REACH stands for recall, emphasize, altruism, commit, and hold. Recall means thinking objectively about what hurt you. Don’t block your emotions, but don’t dwell on them either. Emphasis requires you to see things from the other person’s perspective. Note that this doesn’t mean downplaying their negative actions.

For altruism, you acknowledge that forgiveness is a gift you’re giving to the other person — and that it’s a gift that others have given to you. Commit means making a firm decision to forgive. Write your intention down somewhere concrete. No one has to see it but you. Next, hold firm to your forgiveness. Forgiving someone isn’t always an immediate thing; it can take time, and you might experience negative emotions for a while. This step means that you’ll remember your desire to forgive when those negative feelings arise.

Remember the positives. No one is all bad or all good. The person who hurt you has flaws, but they also have positive attributes. What are they? Take some time to think about or even write down their good traits. What made you care about them in the beginning? When negative feelings begin to surface, replace those thoughts with positive memories.

Visit NHCC.us for more on New Horizon Counseling Center and Herrick Lipton!