A: Mental health issues in India are becoming more visible today. A survey indicates that 30 percent of working professionals suffer from some form of mental or emotional stress at work. In some cases, this leads to depression as well. What according to you is causing this?
Dr A: The most common cause for any person is the constant worry around finances, health and family. When a person is uncertain about the future and feels like losing control, the emotions of fear and apprehension rise leading to anxiety. It has especially been tough in the last few months with COVID-19 accelerating these conditions and work pressure manifesting in different ways. At the moment, we do not have tools to combat this crisis and we are yet figuring out ways to adapt to this new way of life. This uncertainty is causing a lot of worry leading to negative fearful overthinking.
A: When we specifically talk about stress at work, what are the most common areas that you come across?
Dr A: The most common stress areas at work are—immense work pressure, stretched long hours creating work-life imbalance, job insecurities, poor interpersonal relationships, sudden organizational changes, work politics, harassment at work and lack of appreciation. We may feel that these are very common issues, but the fact is that the smallest issues have the biggest impact on the mental psyche of human beings in general.
A: When we speak about men and women at work, do you see different concern areas emerging? How difficult is it for women as compared to men to cope with these conditions?