Many of us struggle to work due to our depression. In fact, the World Health Organization estimates over 264 million people worldwide suffer from depression, so it’s no stranger to the office.

Depression profoundly affects employee health and wellness and can decrease your productivity, increase absenteeism, and lower your overall job satisfaction. How can you battle your depression? Use gratitude. Studies show when you practice gratitude – actively acknowledging and appreciating the positive aspects of your life – you can significantly reduce feelings of stress and depression.

Gratitude shifts your focus away from negative thoughts/feelings and toward a positive viewpoint. When you express thankfulness, your brain releases dopamine and serotonin, known as “feel-good” neurotransmitters. These neurotransmitters enhance your mood, helping reduce your feelings of depression.

How to cultivate gratitude at work

  1. Keep a gratitude journal: Write down three things you feel grateful for daily. This simple practice allows you to focus on the positive aspects of your life and work.
  2. Create a gratitude wall: Share your thankfulness with others and post notes of gratitude on a bulletin board or digital platform in your office. Invite your coworkers to add their own thanks – whether to you or to others. When you see others’ expressions of gratitude, you can inspire more positivity and employee wellness. 
  3. Regularly express appreciation: Talk with your supervisor about how your team can foster a culture where your co-workers regularly express appreciation for each other’s work. You could offer positive verbal recognition in meetings, give written notes, or even share small tokens of appreciation.
  4. Establish gratitude as part of meetings: Incorporate gratitude into regular team meetings. At the beginning of the meeting, ask each person to share something they are grateful for. This practice can help set a positive tone for the meeting and the workday.

Empac helps you improve work-related issues so you can thrive

Incorporating gratitude practices into your workplace can significantly impact employee well-being and improve overall company health. Remember, while gratitude is a powerful tool in combating depression, it is not a replacement for professional mental health services.

Let our Employee Assistance Program (EAP) serve as an invaluable resource to you in identifying and addressing depression. Our experts provide counseling, coaching, and critical incident stress debriefing to help you cope with work-related issues that may contribute to depression.

Depression in the workplace is a serious issue, but with resources like empac and practices like gratitude, we can begin to combat it and begin to thrive.

Get started today.