Case study: Mental Health Allies
There’s no doubt that work and mental health are very closely connected, and Allies are just one way that we help colleagues at XPS to access support when they need it.
Being an Ally is a very rewarding experience. It can be hard; you never know what people might share with you. But you get to practice compassion, empathy, and patience. And there’s no better feeling than when someone has talked themselves out and thanks you for being there for them and listening in that moment.
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During the pandemic I was classed as highly vulnerable. I was living in a small flat and not able to go out and do any of the social activities I loved. I felt like my life had stopped. My work suffered, I wasn’t performing at the levels I usually expect from myself, I couldn’t keep my head in it.
I ended up having three months off work. I missed being face to face with people, having someone to talk to. It was a lonely place.
I realised I had to press the reset button and concentrate on what made me happy. I also took a leap and applied for the role at XPS, which felt like something I would enjoy more. I also changed my mentality towards home working and adapted to not being in a busy office environment.
I am now in the position where I can be there to support any colleague needing to reach out. I believe we all need someone to listen to us at some point and being an Ally helps me do that.