In recent years, there has been an increase in mental health difficulties in the electrical profession and other trades jobs within the UK, with many failing to grasp and communicate how they feel and what they’re going through. Electricians are seen as the least trade workers willing to communicate their mental health problems. This article will explore some of the main talking points, including the reasons why mental health concerns have increased and the different ways we can help reduce these concerns to ensure that no one feels alone and receives the support they need.
According to a mental health survey published this year on www.ironmongerydirect.co.uk, “four in five trades workers encounter mental health concerns, which include stress, anxiety, and depression.” Furthermore, 13% of tradespeople suffer from a type of mental health illness on a daily basis.
These worrying figures clearly demonstrate the difficulties that many tradespeople have been experiencing. But why? What is causing this?
Here are some of the main reasons why trades people have been experiencing stress at work:
- Finances 34%
- Tensions with customers 24%
- High workload 23%
- Tensions with colleagues 21%
- Making Mistakes 19%
We can conclude from this that finance is seen as one of the key causes of stress, followed by poor customer relations.
Being open about mental health problems
When it comes to being open about mental health difficulties in the trades, electricians are considered as the least eager to talk about their struggles, with just 11% of electricians in the UK open to discussion on mental health.
Emma Mamo, Head of Workplace Wellbeing at Mind stated that “because men generally find it more difficult to talk about how they’re feeling, in male-dominated industries, employees are often less willing to ask for support.”
How can we assist those working in trade who may be suffering from mental health? What can be done to help electricians in the UK and tradespeople in general to be more open about their issues?
If you’re an electrician or tradesperson yourself or have friends/ family in the trade, here are a few things to consider to help manage mental health struggles due to work:
- Talking to friends and family: This is a huge step and can go far in maintaining a healthy mind. Being open those close to you can lead to relief and weight lifted off your shoulders. We’re all human so never be ashamed to share any problems you may be going through as they will just end up making you feel worse.
- Contacting the local GP: Speaking to your local GP about any mental health struggles can go a long way as they are able to offer multiple support methods that best suit your needs.
- Exercise: Exercising regularly has shown to improve self-esteem, confidence, and help to stay positive, tackling any negative thoughts that you may have encountered due to stress.
- Relaxing the body and mind: Stress doesn’t just affect the mind but also the body. When stressed, it can be hard to relax due to the tenseness it has caused in the muscles. Therefore, taking the time to stretch and getting enough sleep can help relax and loosen muscles.
- Making time for hobbies: Taking the time to recharge and distract yourself from work is always important when maintaining a healthy mind.
- Healthy diet: Eating a healthy and balanced diet can also help with improving mental health as the body can have an impact on the mind. Therefore, feeling healthy can result in thinking healthy and staying positive.
Please note that we are not experts within this field and we can’t guarantee anything. The information within this article was found through research using multiple sources online. For mental health support services and professional advice, please see the list of support services below.
Mental health support services:
For those that may be struggling with mental health, whether you’re a tradesperson or not, listed below are a few mental health support services that may be found to be useful.
More articles related to the electrical industry available on our blog page: https://learntradeskills.co.uk/blog/