Who's responsible for your mental health at work? Some would say your H.R. department, others the Safety and Risk Management team, others still would suggest your direct line manager/supervisor. I say that a combination of all of these can have input into your good mental health, but ultimately it's YOU who is responsible for making it happen.
We live in a culture that it constantly attempting to calculate risk and allocate blame or responsibility to whomever/whatever process has caused us to achieve a less than perfect outcome. It's my opinion that this dominant way of thinking has influenced a trend away from us as individuals taking on full responsibility for ourselves. It's easier to allocate responsibility elsewhere, than to do the hard work that is sometimes required to fix or prevent our own problems.
This being said, I always advocate for a wellbalanced approach. Personal responsibility needs to be present, but it needs to be balanced with public accountability too. A one size fits all approach rarely works in every circumstance (except in the case of blue cheese and figs - they should always go together), so we need to look at the parties, the players involved, to see where we can reasonably allocate responsibility in specific circumstances. In every relationship; partner/partner; workplace/staff member; citizen/government; parent/child; it's important to consider power dynamics when determining responsibility. Who has the power and resources to achieve the task required? And who has any vulnerabilities that could act as obstacles to prevent achieving the task required?
Let's consider an individual's mental health in the workplace and allocate responsibility for positive wellbeing:
Responsibilities of the WORKPLACE:
Responsibilities of the INDIVIDUAL:
Be willing to take personal responsibility for seeking the help you need to care for your own mental health. Your workplace has legal responsibilities to help and support you, but they cannot do this until you have done what is within your power to do: talk about it.
Check out the rest of this website wellbalance.net.au for more information about workplace wellbeing programs and how I can help your workplace to support staff and reduce the risk of psychological injury occurring.