World Mental Health Day was just recently celebrated. It raised awareness of the mental health issues people experience in everyday life. It’s a silent battle that’s been here for quite some time. Ranging from anxiety to depression and more, this silent killer has been affecting more and more people over the years.
Among the most affected by mental illness are call center agents. There’s a constant hiring process going on in a lot of call centers because of the amount of people that quit due to stress.
According to a 2009 study by Toronto-based Morneau Shepell, a provider of employee and family assistance programs, call center employees report higher levels of mental and physical health issues than those of other industries. It noted 47.6 per cent of employees who quit cited stress as the main reason for leaving.
Stress is quite the norm for call centers since the demand for good statistics is so high. Not to mention that most call centers are from different countries from different time zones. Most likely, the employees become nocturnal by profession and cause serious physical repercussions to the body.
It is also noted that call center agents are most likely more depressed than any group of people. In an article by Anxiety.org, there are studies that show that 58.3% of call center workers were significantly more stressed (58.3% vs. 19.3%), depressed (62.9% vs. 4.6%), and anxious (33.9% vs. 1.4%).
This is a serious issue that needs to be voiced out. If you think that you might be suffering from symptoms of mental illness, do something about it. Here are some minor steps that you can do to improve your mental health as a call center agent:
Have yourself checked by the right doctor
NEVER self diagnose any kind of illness. Always have yourself checked by a psychiatrist if you need medicine to feel better. Go to a psychologist if you just need somebody to talk to. Going to the right doctor will make all the difference.
Talk about what you’re going through with other people
Be vocal about it. A common trait among depressed people is their tendency to isolate themselves from the ones they love. Never make that mistake. Talking to other people can take a huge weight of your shoulder. It will not fix the problem but it will make you feel better.
Get enough sleep
Not having enough sleep can affect your mood which can also be the cause of mental instability. Prioritize your sleep. Say no to other people when they invite you to go instead of resting. Be selfish in rest and sleep. Your body will thank you.
Have a balanced diet and proper exercise
Not eating the right food can cause a lot of health problems such as getting tired more easily, or feeling sluggish, or getting sick. You need the right nutrition so that you can cope with stress, physically and mentally. Exercise releases hormones that can help you be happier. It also gets the blood pumping and delivers more oxygen to the brain. Have a good balance of healthy food and exercise to help you cope with any mental illness.
Find a healthy outlet for stress
Let’s face it, you can never do away with stress. You just need to find a way to cope with it. Set aside time for a hobby or a sport that can help you unwind and reset your mindset from work. Having a little “me time”, even just a little, is a step towards achieving good mental health.
Mental illness is not going to go away if you just ignore it. The first step is to help yourself. By saving yourself, you save other people along the way.
Mancunianmatter.uk has an article about mental health of call center agents. Read it here.
Cos-mag.com also has an article. Read it here.
Anxiety.org discusses mental illness among call center agents. Read it here.
Rankandfile.ca also has an article about call center agents’ mental health. Read it here.