Health

Neuroscience and work: experts discussed the importance of mental health

The specialists addressed the challenges of cultivating well-being in everyday life from the point of view of mental health at work
The specialists addressed the challenges of cultivating well-being in everyday life from the point of view of mental health at work

The 3rd International Virtual Symposium on Neurosciences and Well-being of the INECO Foundation took place this afternoon with the intervention of recognized national and foreign specialists under the common theme “Cultivating well-being and mental health from work and daily life”.

Mental health professionals affirm that the critical situation that the world has gone through in recent years due to the pandemic made evident the importance of well-being in facing challenges. the older generations youths seem to be seeing this perspective more clearly, as experts have noted that they are increasingly prioritizing their mental health and seek to work in companies with cultures that foster it.

Thus, for specialists, those who focus on enhancing their well-being by taking care of their body, their rest time and their emotional health, will be more prepared to face the future increasingly changing and uncertain. “Many of us spend a third of our time at work. If we think that another third should be resting, we will soon understand how important it is to cultivate well-being in daily life, particularly in the workplace”, he asserted to start the symposium in which he participated. Infobae the doctor Mary Rock, psychologist specializing in the evaluation of cognitive functions, director of INECO organizations, deputy director of Department of Neuropsychology of INECO and scientific coordinator of the INECO Foundation.

Created in 2008, the INECO Foundation supports research programs aimed at understanding the neurobiological bases of the most complex brain processes and promotes academic projects aimed at improving the prevention, detection and treatment of neurological and psychiatric disorders (Getty Images)
Created in 2008, the INECO Foundation supports research programs aimed at understanding the neurobiological bases of the most complex brain processes and promotes academic projects aimed at improving the prevention, detection and treatment of neurological and psychiatric disorders (Getty Images)

It is that to compete for talent, companies and individuals will have to make changes by incorporating mental health into their policies, practices, measures and benefits. This change includes the efforts of all institutional actors who must also take ownership of the issue to serve as allies by fostering an environment of transparency Y opening and a culture that favors well-being.

But what is considered wellness? The science defines it as a skill that is cultivated and built but, like most human skills, its construction requires the investment of time and effort. The construction and care of well-being must become a habit that is cultivated not artificially, but immersed in our daily reality.

“Why do we get out of bed every morning to go to the office instead of spending a lifetime immersed in nature or doing those things that we like to do? The obvious answer is that we have to make a living, but there is a long and compelling list of non-monetary reasons that also answers this question.” Barry Schwartz, emeritus professor of psychology at the Swarthmore College and visiting professor at the Haas School of Business at Berkeley.

Important experts recognized worldwide discussed key issues to promote well-being from our daily work and from organizations
Important experts recognized worldwide discussed key issues to promote well-being from our daily work and from organizations

For the specialist, “satisfied workers feel good doing their job and they do it because they feel they are in charge. Their workday offers them an autonomy that they use to achieve a level of mastery and expertise. They are proud of what they do, they work with people and they do their job because they believe it is an opportunity for social commitment. Lastly, they do it because they consider what they are doing to be meaningful and meaningful. They believe that their work improves the quality of life of other people. Of course, there are few professions that have these characteristics and none that have them all the time”.

“Of course people would not work if it were not for a salary. But why, for the vast majority, does the job have little or none of these attributes? How was it that a work model was created in which non-material satisfactions that inspire better work are reduced or eliminated? Workers who do these mechanical and routine jobs just for pay, no matter how hard they try to make sense of their work situation, they end up burning out. For the vast majority of the population, work leaves much to be desired. The question is why,” he remarked.

According to Schwartz, “When a job is given in optimal conditions, people perform better and therefore companies generate more income. When we resort to the reward system or prizes for work we take a problem and make it even worse. By organizing work in this way, companies are guided by money and fail. If we spend eight hours a day five days a week mechanically doing the same thing, we lose the habit of thinking and become ignorant beings.

Job burnout is a special type of work-related stress, a state of physical or emotional exhaustion that also involves an absence of a sense of accomplishment and loss of personal identity (Getty Images)
Job burnout is a special type of work-related stress, a state of physical or emotional exhaustion that also involves an absence of a sense of accomplishment and loss of personal identity (Getty Images)

Within the framework of the exhibition, Dr. Marisa Salanova, PhD in Psychology, professor of Positive Organizational Psychology and director of the team WANT (Psychosocial Prevention and Healthy Organizations) in the Jaume I University (UJI), lectured on the new challenges of mental health at work.

“Mental health is not the mere absence of disease but the presence of physical and emotional well-being. The positive leadership styles the autonomy and the variety of chores not only do they make the worker find himself with greater engagement but reduce the job burnout. People who have higher psychological well-being are more successful at work,” he said.

Burnout or exhaustion is a chronic stress syndrome which refers specifically to phenomena in the occupational context. It is characterized by three dimensions: feelings of exhaustion or lack of energy, feelings of negativism or cynicism related to work, and finally, reduced professional efficacy. In 2019 it was recognized as a mental disorder in the International Classification of Diseases (ICD) prepared by the World Health Organization (WHO).

Salanova He wondered what the challenges for science are. “Mental health must be considered in its entirety and not only as the absence of mental illness. Invest in measures based on sound research. Positive psychological intervention protocols should be developed. We must ensure that we generate healthier and more positive organizations. Mental health is not only an HR responsibility, it must be conceived as a value in itself and not as a means to an end”, he indicated.

The COVID-19 pandemic has had big effects on work stress, whether working from home or going to work (Getty Images)
The COVID-19 pandemic has had big effects on work stress, whether working from home or going to work (Getty Images)

According to a recent study conducted by the job portal, Boomerangthe occurrence of burnout syndrome in Argentina it is 80.2%as in Chili. In Peru is 72.9% and in Panama 53.6%. At the regional level, users have mostly experienced stress, lack of motivation and unusual exhaustion due to excessive workload.

It is important to highlight that not only the workload causes stress, but also when there are few work activities assigned or the tasks performed are very simple, it can also have adverse effects, and in either case the aim is to grant the necessary medical and rehabilitative treatment, as well as Recommendations for companies on prevention and promotion of health in the work environment.

Created in 2008, the INECO Foundation supports research programs aimed at understanding the neurobiological basis of the most complex brain processes and promotes academic projects aimed at improving the prevention, detection and treatment of neurological and psychiatric disorders. Its fundamental pillars are interdisciplinary work; the relevance of research projects for society; the international impact of his research; and raising awareness of neuroscience issues in the community. Among other recognitions, the INECO Foundation obtained the Konex Award 2018 as one of the 5 most outstanding health entities of the decade in Argentina (2008-2017).

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