From the way we interact with others to the way we work, the COVID-19 pandemic has had undeniable ramifications on many aspects of our lives.
Although many believe that the pandemic has predominately impaired our physical health and ability to participate in everyday activities such as going to work, the pandemic has had a significant impact on our mental health and well-being.
Sadly, isolation and working from home has seen mental health problems such as depression and anxiety soar. In the United Kingdom alone, 21% of adults have reported that the pandemic has caused them to experience a mental health problem.
In addition, the number of people experiencing work-related stress has soared in the last year.
While it can often be challenging to overcome mental health problems and stress alone, leadership coaching can essentially help improve mental health and prevention is better than cure, meaning the sooner you give your people support, the more likely they are to handle challenges and choose responses to difficult situations. This could even lead to less time off work and prevent more serious mental health challenges, by leaving situations to grow out of control.
Our Top 5 Way Leadership Coaching Can Help Improve Mental Health
To support you and your people, we have shared our top 5 ways that leadership coaching can help improve mental health below.
1. Leadership Coaching Can Help Individuals Identify and Navigate Stress
64% of employees in the United Kingdom have shared that work-related stress has increased throughout the pandemic. Much research highlights that increased work-related stress stems from challenges faced as teams turn to remote working and reduced physical interaction.
Regrettably, when an individual experiences significant amounts of work-related stress, they will often find it difficult to cope in other aspects of their life. They may also feel as though they cannot discuss their concerns and worries with their colleagues and employers.
In this instance, leadership coaching can help both individuals and teams identify stressors. In doing so, they will have the opportunity to understand what causes them to experience work-related stress and develop strategies that will gradually mitigate the overall impact work-related stress has on their day-to-day life.
2. Leadership Coaching Encourages Individuals To Pause and Reflect
Amid the global pandemic, many have expressed that they simply do not have time to pause and reflect. However, pausing and reflecting is imperative if we are to preserve our mental health.
In a previous blog, Heather Rayfield explained that taking a moment for yourself to pause and reflect is a counterintuitive action that can lead us to greater understanding and effectiveness.
Not only can taking a moment to reflect on the factors that may cause us to experience greater bouts of stress enable us to respond to situations better, but it prevents our fight or flight response from taking over.
As many often find it difficult to pause and reflect independently, leadership coaching is highly recommended for individuals and teams.
This is because leadership coaching will help initiate meaningful conversations and encourage individuals to share how they feel and seek support and guidance.
3. Leadership Coaching Often Combines Exercise and Optimism
Here at The Leadership Coaches, we often provide walk and talk coaching to our clients. A somewhat new phenomenon, walk and talk coaching offers individuals the opportunity to take advantage of the benefits that the great outdoors affords while also participating in a leadership coaching session.
Combining exercise and optimism is vital in improving mental health.
This is because exercise releases those all-important feel-good endorphins that automatically boost our mental health for up to 24 hours. In addition, remaining optimistic promotes positive cognitive responses. With this in mind, walk and talk leadership coaching is highly beneficial when considering how leadership coaching can help improve mental health.
4. Leadership Coaching Strengthens Relationships In Teams
Across the United Kingdom, workplace conflict has resulted in 75% of employees stating that their mental health has become impaired. Sadly, this has seen almost 25% of employees taking time away from work.
To ensure that mental health in the workplace is not compromised, leaders must ensure that relationships in teams can be preserved and maintained. However, with little experience, many leaders find that they are unable to do so. As a result, external leadership coaching is often employed.
When an external leadership coach works with teams, they often look at how teams can perform effectively while enhancing relationships to ensure that high performance can be achieved.
5. Leadership Coaching Can Help Teams Prepare For The Future, Irrespective Of What It May Look Like
Often, mental health problems such as anxiety and work-related stress stem from internal influences. However, in some instances, work-related stress arises because of external influences, such as the pandemic.
Ask anyone whether they were prepared for a pandemic to alter their everyday lives, and you will probably find that they say they were not. Likewise, ask any large organisation whether they were prepared for the pandemic, and you will likely find that they have the same response.
Although organisations and their people have adapted over the last year, being unable to predict what the future may hold causes many to experience stress. With little control over external influences, such as significant life changes that could occur in the future, many employees find it increasingly difficult to adapt and cope. Sadly, this can result in poor mental health.
However, with the support of a leadership coach, individuals worldwide find that they have the support they need to alleviate the negative feelings experienced in the moment. Still, they have the necessary help to prepare for the future, irrespective of what it may look like.
As a result, leadership coaching can help improve mental health in the workplace by ensuring that teams can adjust quickly.
From working with individuals to help them pause and reflect to working with teams to enhance relationships, as we can see above, there are many ways that leadership coaching can help improve mental health in the workplace.
Having reviewed our top 5 ways that leadership coaching can help improve mental health if you believe that you or your team would benefit from leadership coaching, we welcome you to contact us to discuss your needs.
At The Leadership Coaches, we have several leadership coaches that are ready to assist you.
If you would like to contact us, please call us directly on 0800 345 7727. You can also email Zoe@theleadershipcoaches.co.uk.