Stress - Employees bring their skills, aspirations, burdens, and vulnerabilities to work
A systematic review of effective workplace interventions for people with common mental health problems (British Occupational Health Research Foundation) has found that these interventions should be cognitive in nature. The evidence found that early psychological interventions comprising Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) principles, to increase activity and coping skills may be effectively delivered in the workplace for those off sick.
It found that CBT is most effective for jobs that already involve a high degree of decision latitude (jobs with low decision latitude should prioritise increasing control potential accompanied by CBT interventions. Our experience tells us that it is common mental health problems which are the major causes of sickness absence and poor health in the workplace. We know for example that individuals bring their skills, aspirations, burdens, and vulnerabilities to work. Our focus over the last 14 years has been to promote work as a means of improving psychological well-being and we have developed workplace based rehabilitation services to treat common emotional problems such as stress anxiety and depression.
NICE recommends CBT to help people with emotional health problems remain in and/or return to work. Cognitive Behaviour Therapy is an active-directive approach to psychotherapy which sets out to accomplish a number of things:
It aims to teach people that emotional disturbance is not caused by events, but are based on the self-defeating beliefs that people hold about these events
It sets out to teach people to identify, evaluate and change these self-defeating beliefs to those that are healthier for both the individuals and the organisations in which these people work
It encourages people to act in ways that support these healthy beliefs
It helps people to identify the obstacles to change that will help both them and the organisations in which they work
Marie Church, 26 March 2016