EPAM Anywhere: How to Cope with Depression at Work: Important Why’s and How’s
Career & Education / 3 min

How to Cope with Depression at Work: Important Why’s and How’s

An employee lies covering their head with a laptopAn employee lies covering their head with a laptop

There are times when your job can be the main source for depressive symptoms. If you are stressed for an extended period of time, feel stuck at work, experience certain burnout symptoms, or experience multiple challenges simultaneously, it can lead to workplace depression.

Experiencing depression at work can make it feel challenging to get through the day, let alone cope with all of your routine required tasks, deadlines, and other work-related issues. If you’re having hard times and wondering how to avoid depression at work, take a few moments to read this article and find some answers.

Signs that indicate you might be close to depression at work

There are a number of different signs of workplace depression and it’s important to understand how it impacts your everyday life at your (home) office and what signs you should be looking for.

Reduced productivity

Productivity is probably one of the best indicators of the inner state of our team members. Although decreased velocity at work may be caused by several factors, such as boredom, inability to concentrate, and lack of motivation, it is also one of the more visible symptoms of workplace depression.

Excessive errors in work tasks

    Even if the fatigue and lack of motivation associated with a depressing job are not immediately obvious, an increase in the number of errors made in routine work tasks ordinarily completed with no problem can be a red flag. It is also important to know that your depressed condition can be associated with impaired decision-making, so it is wise to be careful about making important decisions if you are experiencing depressive symptoms.

    Physical health issues

      Our emotional state is directly connected with our physical condition, and it comes as no surprise that people who have depressing jobs often feel ill. Headaches, fatigue, insomnia, and digestive issues are frequent work depression-related symptoms.

      Frequent absences from work

        The feelings of being overwhelmed, lacking energy, and having difficulty concentrating can leave you feeling like you don’t know how to work when depressed. Occasionally, all of us need a break. You sometimes hear people talk about taking a day off as a “mental health day” so that they can recharge. If this happens frequently, if the reason is not to recharge, but because the thought of work feels overwhelming, and if the number of sick days exceeds the number of working days, it’s time to look for the underlying reason and consider work depression.

        If you notice at least one of the signs listed above, the following tips on managing depression at work can be useful.

        Depressing job: how to overcome it

        Coping with depression at work isn’t something that can be done overnight. But taking small steps every day can give you relief and improve the quality of your life in both the short and the long term.

        Easier said than done: notice good things

        g good when you’re coping with depression at work but focusing on even small positive things can help. If everything at your workplace seems irritating, try to find even a couple of things that cheer you up. It can be a small task that you really like doing, meeting with an inspiring team member, or taking a coffee break outside. Pay attention to whatever makes you smile during the day, and return to this pleasant thought when you feel low.

        Talk to your manager

          Generally, managers are interested in the well-being of their colleagues. Since workplace depression can dramatically impair your productivity, your manager will likely want to know why your output has changed. It may feel embarrassing to explain your reasons and admit that you’re experiencing depression, but it shouldn’t be. The fact that your job depresses you is not your failure. An understanding and empathetic manager will want to work with you to come up with ways to help you manage your situation so you can bring your productivity level back to normal.

          Ask for help

            If you work when depressed, feel that you’re losing control over your job depression and that it is not something you can manage on your own, it’s time to contact a health professional. You can set up therapy sessions on your own or via your company’s Employee Assistance Program if your company offers one. Asking for professional help means that you will no longer have to shoulder the burden on your own, and improves your chances of successfully addressing your condition and preventing its more severe consequences.

            Change the job

              If you seek assistance, and come to the realization that you can’t manage your depressing job, it may be that the only right decision is to quit. Some job circumstances are temporary or can be alleviated by efforts on your part or the part of management. If your situation is not one of those, you are not required to stay and battle job depression over an extended period of time.. Forcing yourself to do so is not healthy or sustainable. So get the support you need, take a break, plan your transition, and give yourself the chance to start a better life in a new company.

              Conclusion

              Depression is a severe condition that affects all spheres of your life, and work is no exception. Luckily, there are ways to identify and manage workplace depression. We hope this will help you notice the first signs of this condition immediately, either in yourself, or in a colleague, and take steps to manage depression at work while it’s still at the early stages.

              Written by

              skill.svgskill.svg

              Maryia KonashContent Strategist

              Are you searching for a remote job in IT?

              We're inviting Software Developers, QA Engineers, DevOps Specialists, Business Analysts, Designers, Data Analysts, and other IT specialists to join our community and work from the comfort of your home.

              View jobs