On today’s Blue Monday – described as the most depressing day of the year, mental health and depression charity, AWARE has teamed up with schools and businesses across Northern Ireland in a bid to ‘Brighten up Blue Monday.’ It is asking participants to wear something yellow into the workplace to bring vibrancy and colour into what can seem like a particularly dull day.
One company taking part in the initiative is one of Northern Ireland’s largest private sector employers, Firstsource (pictured above). This global provider of business process outsourcing services currently employs more than 2,000 staff across three sites in Belfast and Derry/Londonderry.
Laura Hourcian, VP HR UK for Firstsource said; “We understand that a healthy workforce is a happy workforce. And, as a business we continually invest in our employees and provide a number of programmes that address mental health within the workplace. We are delighted to be working with AWARE to proactively help and support employees dealing with these issues.”
Every participant taking part is donating £2 to AWARE in order to allow the charity to carry out its vital work in helping the one in four local people who will suffer from a mental illness at some time in their life.
Teresa Sloan from AWARE said, “Although this is a recognised date in the calendar, for people suffering from stress, anxiety or depression any day of the year can feel like Blue Monday, therefore it’s important that you are aware of the most common symptoms of depression. We offer advice and support on our website www.aware-ni.org or by calling 90357820.”
For people suffering from stress, anxiety or depression any day of the year can feel like Blue Monday, therefore it’s important that you are aware of the most common symptoms of depression. These are:
- An unusually sad mood that doesn’t go away
- Loss of enjoyment and interest in activities that used to be enjoyable
- Tiredness and lack of energy yet having difficulty with sleep
- Loss of confidence in yourself or poor self-esteem
If you are worried about yourself, it’s important you speak to someone as soon as possible. This could be your GP or a trusted friend or relative. A problem shared is a problem solved.