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Mental Health Issues In Small Businesses: A Matter Not To Be Neglected

Stress, anxiety, work

When you think of the economy, you tend think of the big businesses, the powerhouses, the Apples, the Googles. But in a nation where small businesses thrive and nourish the economy, it seems illogical to leave them starving.

In light of a recent study on over 750 small business operators, MYOB and Beyond Blue’s collaboration revealed that over half of small business operators felt that running their business led to feelings of anxiety and depression with nearly half claiming that it was largely due to financial and cashflow concerns.

In reality, small businesses are the “lifeblood of the Australian economy, and we need to support them”, says MYOB’s Chief Employee Experience Officer, Helen Lea.

stress, mental health

This has for a long time been a stigmatised subject in society, one that mustn’t really be discussed or mentioned; taboo if you will. But the facts are, that mental health is a prevailing issue that must be tended to. Research has shown that feelings of stress and anxiety on small business owners are ones that stem from far deeper than just the books.

Top challenges for small business owners:

  1. Financial concerns and cashflow (48%)
  2. Attracting and/or retaining customers (13%)
  3. Not having enough family time (12%)
  4. Not having enough time to do the work (12%)

During times of stress, it’s important to talk about the issues pressing at you, whether that be opening up to family members, friends, colleagues, or your GP. The worst thing you could do is to keep everything bottled up. Unfortunately this seems to be an issue in itself, with nearly a quarter of small business operators claiming that it would not be beneficial due to their wanting to keep the situation private and undisclosed.

While it is normal to feel pressure when running a small business, you don’t have to face the challenges alone”, said Dr Blashki

Beyond Blue are currently working on providing and developing resources for advisors, family and friends of small business operators to support them during potentially stressful times in order to ensure that the workplace is one that is mentally healthy.

Business, support

Your wellbeing is not only important to the functioning of your business, but also to your family life, the construction of healthy relationships and increased productivity.

If you’re feeling stressed about work, speak to someone, don’t hesitate to talk to your close ones, co-workers or your GP. If you don’t feel comfortable sharing with close ones mental health professionals are available at the Beyond BlueSupport Service via phone 24/7 on 1300 22 4636 or via beyondblue.org.au/get-support for online chat (3PM – 12AM AEST) or email responses or email responses (within 24 hours).

Written by Emeric Brard

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