What Does Mental Health Need? More Sunlight, More Candor, More Unashamed Conversation

Posted on May 19, 2021

By Samantha Carlson-DuBois 

May is Mental Health Awareness month, and we’re reflecting on the importance of mental balance and wellness. 

Mental struggles and illness are incredibly common. Nearly one in five adults in the U.S. live with a mental illness, and the pandemic has had a significant impact on mental health for many. 

To support our commitment to health and well-being, Offleash provides employees with both wellness and mental health benefits.

These benefits give employees the freedom to choose the practices, products, or activities that best support their mental health and alleviate stress. So far, employees have put their benefits toward everything from therapy and coaching, to gym memberships, exercise classes, meditation and yoga retreats, and even supplies for a favorite hobby.

I chatted with a few employees about these benefits, how they’re using them to find balance, and what working at an agency that prioritizes mental health means to them. Here’s what they had to say:  

“Given everything that’s been going on over the past year, I’ve been using my benefit for online sessions with a therapist who I see about once a month (sometimes more, sometimes less). I’m a big believer that mental health shouldn’t have a stigma. Just like physical health, we have to make sure we’re keeping our minds and souls in tip-top shape!”

—Bianca, Senior Account Executive  

“I’ve been using my mental health benefit on two of my favorite wellness practices—acupuncture and massage. I’m so grateful because, without this benefit, I probably wouldn’t invest in my mental health in this way. It helps me take care of myself so that I can do better in both work and my personal life.”

—Georgia, Content, Social Media Specialist 

“I have dealt with anxiety and depression issues for years, and even with all of the awareness around it today, it’s still stigmatized in some office settings. It’s often difficult to go to an employer and take a sick day because of those issues. At Offleash, I know that I can go to our owners, speak with honesty and expect understanding in return. Not having to carry around a lie and live my truth—both the good and the bad—with our team is a life changer.”

—Kelly, Vice President 

Employee mental health and well-being is important all year long, but this month emphasizes the importance of having open, empathetic conversations about mental health as we continue to navigate the challenges life throws at us. 

Actress Glenn Close said, “What mental health needs is more sunlight, more candor, more unashamed conversation.” And we couldn’t agree more. 

Samantha specializes in communications strategy, media relations and client relations at Offleash. She is also a core member of the Offleash culture and wellness arm, the Wise & Well team. Contact Samantha here.