Mental health professionals warn of post-pandemic stress taking toll at work
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Mental health professionals at UofL Health said Thursday that focusing on well-being may be more important now than ever before.
For many people, the two years since the start of a global pandemic have been a roller coaster of stress.
“Our society is in a crisis state,” Mental health therapist Brandon Kays said. “We’ve got to figure out a way to manage those stressors in a more healthy way.”
In 2020, businesses were closing, jobs were being lost, and many healthcare workers were working around the clock.
COVID-19 cases have now leveled off in 2022 and businesses are hiring almost everywhere. The general public has a sense of normalcy, but Kays says it’s fine if not everyone does.
“We have a lot of people who are working seven days a week,” he said. “We have a lot of people out of need who are working two jobs all the time and not getting a break from it. I think people need to get a little bit of a break from their routine. They need to spend some time with themselves. When you spend seven days a week working and pouring yourself out, you start to lose sight of who you are, what your motivations are, what you care about.”
According to Kays, there are people who have spent the majority of their lives working at one job and realized during the pandemic that what they are doing is simply not suitable for a healthy mind. He went on to say that it could be as simple as listening to music at work or bringing in a picture of family to help reduce stress, but for some, those things aren’t enough.
“My hope for everyone is that we’re able to get past autopilot,” Kays said, “and live meaningful, intentional lives.”
Those who feel like stress levels aren’t changing and think may never get better should ask for help. Kays said some people feel that way for up to two years before seeking assistance.
There are therapists and counselors that can help across Louisville. To get started here are a few resources:
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