By Linda Kelly, MSW, RSW
We shouldn’t have to choose.
I can’t say this enough. To put off having personal lives and families out of fear that we’ll lose our jobs or our place in the workforce is shameful and demeaning. It is mind-boggling to see countless examples of people who have suffered for making that choice. In many ways, our society has not yet evolved beyond this division of priorities.
The Kelly Mental Health family is growing. And the evidence of this growth comes not only with the addition of new team members who have courageously taken the reins towards helping our community, but in the growth of families, relationships, and partnerships among our team.
I could tell that when Amanda, our Office Administrator, approached me a few months ago to very tentatively announce her pregnancy, she was worried. She worried about what we would do, how we would cope without her there, how I would react given that she’d only been there a few months, and she expressed perhaps even a sense of guilt about having to take time off.
I had to laugh, because she didn’t know.
By Kristen Sohlman, HBA, RP
In life, we have many different roles and responsibilities related to work, physical health, a career, family, friends, and time. It is no wonder that sometimes we find ourselves feeling stressed or overwhelmed. It is important to remember that small amounts of stress are healthy and necessary as they help us to be motivated, efficient, helps with good mental focus, and helps us to feel more content and happy within our lives. Whereas having too much stress for a long time results in feeling stressed out, overwhelmed, overloaded, burnt out, and exhausted.
Work-life balance does not mean that we are making our priorities between work and other aspects of our lives equal, and instead, that we are meeting our own individual needs in order to perform optimally at work, as well as in the other aspects of our lives.
By: Maria Forget, Social Work Student
Criticism can be difficult to hear, especially when we take pride in what we do. It is hard not to take criticism personally since it could be incredibly specific and not always positive. As humans, we tend to jump to the worst-case scenario and lean towards the negative side of matters. Some of us may focus on the negative, as one negative word said has the potential to outshine the positive. This can create hurt feelings, even though the criticism was not intended to be taken personally.
Even though you may feel you’re putting forth your best efforts, it is almost impossible to be perfect. Criticism should be expected. Some individuals may take criticism constructively and learn from it, while others may feel defeated, resentful, or unfairly targeted. While reactions to criticism vary, you are not helpless because of it. If you feel as though you are especially sensitive to criticism, you came to the right place. I will be discussing some points through personal experience and observations on how one could accept criticism constructively, and why they should.
How one could accept criticism constructively:
Why is it important to accept criticism constructively?
More than ever before, we play many different roles in our lives. We are workers, colleagues, parents, spouses, friends, caregivers, and volunteers. With the fast pace of today’s society, we must ensure to make room in our lives for taking care of our own mental well-being.
Achieving balance among all of these competing priorities can be quite difficult. Achieving work/life balance means having equilibrium among all of the priorities in your life. In our rush to get it all done both at work and at home, it is easy to forget that as our stress levels increase, our productivity decreases. Stress can zap our energy levels and our concentration, make us irritable or depressed, and even have a negative effect on our personal and professional relationships. Moreover, stress weakens our immune systems; making us susceptible to a variety of ailments. Achieving balance in your life is one way that you can help manage stress and ensure that you are performing at your best.
How can you achieve balance in your life?
Have you ever had days when you have felt bored, overloaded, unappreciated or maybe even alone? Most of us have days when we feel this way. However, if you feel like this most of the time you may be flirting with burnout.
Perhaps you lie awake all weekend thinking about Monday and what kind of torture it will bring. You may find yourself missing work often because you just can’t make yourself go. You feel depressed, anxious, and maybe even experience panic attacks because you can’t stop thinking about work. You start to push your family and friends away because you feel like they don’t understand. If this sounds like you or you are someone who typically faces heavy caseloads, becomes emotionally attached to people you are working with, or becomes emotionally drained by your daily tasks, then there are steps you can take to foster self-healing and growth!
Check here periodically for updates from Kelly Mental Health staff.
Check out kellymagazine.ca for recent mental health articles and blog posts.
This blog is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to provide personal support as an alternative to psychotherapy services. Please note that replies are viewable by the public, and we may take a few days to respond. If you require immediate assistance, please call us during business hours.