by: Colleen Perry
Good for you, good for me and good for business
Two dark clouds recently rolled across our community. One of them had a happy ending, the other did not. Both pointed to mental health issues.
With the usual hugs, kisses and “I love you” expressions, a 3-year-old child was put to bed in the safety of a loving home. In the wee hours of morning, intruders stealthily cut a screen, entered the home and removed the sleeping child.
Hours later her absence is discovered. Local police, county sheriff and the FBI arrived on the scene–along with the media.
An Amber Alert was sent out. Social media buzzed with chatter–mostly prayers. Within a few hours the child is recovered and safely returned home. Everyone breathes a sigh of relief. The dark cloud passed.
A few short weeks later, county officers answered a domestic call. This turned to tragedy with two officers shot. One was released, the other died. The perpetrator was locked up. The media was all over it, and the community rallied offering prayers and condolences. Family, friends and the community mourned the loss.
Myriad prayers and condolences were mixed with many questions and expletives. An occasional “hang ‘em high” comment was heard. Through streaming tears and heavy hearts, the “why” question could be heard. Beyond the grief was the outrage that this happened in this community. This dark cloud is still passing. All is not well. But we go on.
When is enough ENOUGH?
Addiction and mental health issues were contributing factors to both of these local incidences. Addiction and mental health issues affect the afflicted individual as well as every life touched by that person. It’s like the ripple effect caused by throwing a pebble in a pool. Family, community and workplace are affected.
When a mother is worried about a child with an addiction problem, that concern does not stop because she clocked in at work. Employers with employees suffering from depression never consistently receive high quality work. Children with addicts for parents do not get healthy parenting. And so it goes.
Mental health, at the very least, is a cornerstone of good business. It’s not enough to simply show up at work. How we show up is equally important. Business owners need to make sure they are mentally and emotionally equipped for the task. And there are times when employees rely on owners for direction when life is less than perfect on the homefront.
Mental health affects everyone–employer, worker, parent, child. Problems at home overflow to the workplace–and vice versa. Business leaders and owners, workers and citizens need to work together to address concerns. By offering better choices, more hands-up, and more compassion, fewer lives are lost to addiction. Fewer loved ones in jail. Fewer homeless. More children in happy families. More family stability. And fewer tears.
In future issues, B-Savvy will be sharing stories to bring inspiration and help with mental health issues affecting the business community. We will be hearing from professionals across the community offering advice, suggestions and resources. Our goal is to turn on the light, to dispel the clouds of darkness.
To share your story (anonymously if you choose) or provide professional input, send me an email at Colleen@bsavvymagazine or call 479 653-3221.