Business leaders’ mental health at risk as second wave approaches
A staggering 78% of business leaders experienced poor mental health when COVID hit. Experts warn upcoming tighter restrictions could spur a second wave
According to Bupa Global’s Executive Wellbeing Index, more than three-quarters of business leaders have experienced poor mental health due to the pandemic. With the threat of a second wave on the horizon and tighter restrictions already coming into place, there are fears that leaders will suffer once again.
The biggest concern on leaders’ minds? The economy – with less than half feeling optimistic about the nation’s recovery. Confidence is also wavering, with levels in the UK among the lowest in the studies. During the first lockdown, reduced personal freedoms took its toll on mental health, leading to reports of fatigue, low motivation and disturbed sleep. With local lockdowns taking place, there are concerns that these issues will come up again.
What is perhaps the most worrying statistic to come from Bupa Global’s Index, however, is the fact that 32% of executives have delayed seeking help, with 31% saying they find it hard to talk about their mental health.
Dr Luke James, Bupa Global’s Medical Director, notes the importance of acknowledging what may happen if a second lockdown is instigated and the importance of early diagnosis.
“Whatever the outlook, one thing is certain — when the economy is struggling, we’re also more likely to struggle with mental health issues such as depression and anxiety. And with the threat of a second lockdown approaching, we may see an exacerbation in mental-ill health too.
“Acknowledging this, taking steps to support your emotional wellbeing and addressing any issues as quickly as possible are the keys to coping with these challenges because when it comes to mental health, early diagnosis and treatment can have a positive impact on prognosis.”