Poor work / life balance is a driver of men’s mental health issues. What are the solutions?

More and more guys are seeking out the help they need when facing mental health challenges. The stigma is fading and make no mistake this is a good thing - a mental health crisis can have devastating consequences.

3 mates, 3 conversations, 3 guys getting help.

"Right - must dash. Off to see my therapist, got diagnosed with PTSD in December" 

"Hey buddy, how’s things? Random ask, but in your line of work, have you come across any counselors in the London area that you could / would recommend? Breaking up with xxx has been pretty tough, and it’s made me realise that I need to talk to some one about underlying issues... Saw your blog post today and made me think you might have contacts?? 😬"

"Appreciate it mate, struggling with depression atm and waiting to speak to a CBT lady. I'm trying to crack on with fitness and sort my weight & look for new jobs + worries about how much there is to do at home! But keeping busy but things just feel hollow atm and some nights dreading going home for some reason chap. I'm sure things will level off just gotta keep fighting m8" 

How many dads are struggling day to day with the stress of work, work life balance and missing seeing their kids grow up?

The truth is that a full blown mental health crisis affects relatively few men. Many many more men struggle along silently - torn between their desire to provide for their family and be a present, involved Dad.

Clearly there are many mental health issues that are not solved by getting better work life balance.

But for many men it would make a difference to their happiness and stress levels

GQ magazine found that the #1 aspect of modern masculinity, identified by 66% of Men was "being a present father".

While "11% of men have refused a new job and 10% have said no to a promotion because of a lack of good work life balanced opportunities.

Source - Working Families 2018

It’s early days

The dominant narrative is still one of men being “providers” and women being “carers”. Men face higher rates of rejection for flexible working, while women take their engagement rings off before interviews. Society, the workplace and their own expectations all conspire to put a lot of pressure on men to have it all or do it all.

Hi fellas. I joined this group recently because it’s really important to me to be massively engaged in my children’s lives for as long as their childhoods last. At the same time, I want to make progress in my career.
That balance can be hard, especially when so many people perceive caring fathers as uncommitted to their jobs.

“So many people perceive caring fathers as uncommitted to their jobs”

Its pretty shocking.

Outwardly "successful" men will struggle on without truly opening up to someone about what they really want. Head down, be strong.

Then guess what? A work life balance issue becomes a mental health crisis.

This is what needs to happen.

✅ Normalise flexible and part time work for men.

✅ Senior men to lead by example - embracing flexible working opportunities - making it ok spend time with your kids, being flexible.

✅ Change the working culture so that raising happy, successful children isn’t just a female thing.

Dads will be happier and more fulfilled and the opportunities for families to choose how best to arrange their working lives will increase. 

Research backs this up…

It’s time to get help

As one guy in our FB group said 

“I'd go so far as to say that - for the sake of those closest to you, as well as for yourself - it's the most important thing to do sometimes. Unfortunately, those are so often the times when it's the very hardest thing to do. 

But also to echo - you're not alone. And it's empowering to those who are suffering to know that, and hopefully helps them keep things in perspective, and take those steps towards self care and looking after their own well-being."

It can be tough to take the first step and open up to someone, but it makes so much difference once you start.

Click on the button below to find out how I can help you.

Because you’re kids are only young once.