June 25, 2021

Individual mental health depends on collective well-being

Our well-being depends on the groups we are part of and the COVID-19 crisis could play an important role in helping us recognise this.

2 min read

The COVID-19 crisis has seriously damaged mental health all over the world. A high price has been paid by many children who’ve missed out on time with friends and school, and many of the elderly have felt isolated. The challenges and solutions are well documented by the International Public Policy Observatory on COVID.

But the crisis is also shining a light on the stresses faced by employees. In the UK, new evidence on health workers shows that nearly half of those working in intensive care units suffered from severe anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, or harmful use of alcohol. There may be similar patterns in other groups on the front-line, but we just don’t know. And this is highlighting a bigger problem in how we look at mental health. It is nearly always seen as an individual issue requiring individual solutions. Yet in reality it’s as much a problem for groups and organizations.

This is an excerpt from the article Here’s how your mental health depends on collective wellbeing by Geoff Mulgan.

This article is a part of a special series on the connection between inner well-being and social change, in partnership with The Wellbeing ProjectStanford Social Innovation ReviewSchwab Foundation at the World Economic Forum, and Skoll Foundation.

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World Economic Forum

The World Economic Forum (WEF) is a nonprofit established in 1971 and based in Geneva, Switzerland. It engages political, business, cultural, and other leaders of society to shape global, regional, and industry agendas. The WEF hosts an annual meeting every year in Davos, Switzerland, and several regional meetings, that bring together business leaders, international political leaders, economists, celebrities, and journalists to discuss global issues. The organisation also provides a platform for leaders from across stakeholder groups to collaborate on projects and initiatives.

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