Focusing on Mental Health in Small Businesses

October – Mental Health month & Small Business month

These are great initiatives that we honour each year. This year more than ever we need to acknowledge and be accountable for maintaining a good healthy business and good healthy minds.

As small businesses owners, leaders and employees we are overextended folk who are hard pressed especially now that COVID-19 has caused us to draw on all of our resources. We may even feel burdened by our business and life commitments. Business can be fragile at the best of times so now more than ever; we need to develop strategies to help us flourish and grow in adversity.

It is paramount that we develop a culture of resilience within all our environments – work, home and community. What we water grows so here are some simple actions that will help us to keep up the process of photosynthesis. Receiving the right things that are allow us to grow and creating a protective barrier from things that would strangle us with disease.

Ireland is about to go into stage 5 lockdown and our hearts go out to the many many individuals, business and families that are struggling at this time. Mental Health Ireland has done a fantastic job at giving resources and strategies to their people during this time. They have published this wonderful resource:

“In times of uncertainty, focus on what you can control”

I can control – my behaviour, my hand-washing technique, whether I wear a face mask, my social distancing habits.

My routine, my kindness, my exercise, my engagement with social media, my newsfeed, where my help comes from, my communication with my family and friends.

Things outside of my control – how long COVID lasts, other people’s reactions, other people’s behaviours, what is on the news, the economy, levels of lockdown.

So FIRSTLY, put on your oxygen mask and breathe. Breathe before every conversation and before every decision. Take your time no one is going anywhere.

Healthy Business Tips

Whatever your business you can rest assured, you are doing it differently now then you were 10 months ago. We are adapting not just for survival but for the purpose of growth. Driven by the need to be successful, you have kept the doors open but have you done regular health checks and found the leaks?

The businesses that have been most successful during the COVID experience are the businesses that have narrowed to thrive. You know when you peel that onion and get rid of all the excess, you are left with the core and at the very core, it is an onion.

Even if your business began to thrive at the beginning of COVID-19, you would have had difficulty focussing on just one thing. Like an onion that sprouts and begins to wake up and grow and needs to be divided up so that each separate plant will grow to it’s potential. So too the business owner must do regular health checks. Look at the core elements giving particular attention to the primary focus as this is where all the other shoots come from. It needs to be kept healthy. Do not spread yourself too thin. What is your focal point because what takes your focus is what will grow?

Your business is an extension of you, so I will repeat this simple truth:

“In times of uncertainty, focus on what you can control”

I can control – my behaviour, my hand-washing technique, whether I wear a face mask, my social distancing habits.

My routine, my structure, my disciplines, my kindness, my exercise, my engagement with social media, my newsfeed, my network, my communication with my employees or work colleagues and associates.

Things outside of my control – how long COVID lasts, other people’s reactions, other people’s behaviours, what is on the news, the economy, levels of lockdown.

So firstly, put on your own oxygen mask and breathe. Then check the collateral damage and do everything in your power to provide oxygen tanks for your team.

And, don’t what ever you do, under no circumstances cancel Christmas.

Author – Leslie Hopping

Transformational Leader and Mentor


Learn more about Leslie

Other Resources: We recently conducted a live webinar called the resilient leader which was all about developing a resilient leader mindset and tools for developing a resilient leaders team. We recorded this webinar and have now made it available for you to view. Should you wish to find out more about implementing strategies in your business to create resilience and productivity please watch our 1 hour webinar – the resilient leader webinar