Recent statistics report that 1 in 5 people live with a mental health condition. The prevalence of mental health conditions in CEO’s is notably higher, with 49% reporting concerns with their mental well-being. Executives occupying a role at the top of a company or firm comes with tremendous stress and unrelenting pressure.
Many executives describe themselves as workaholics because their dedication to their roles and the success to their organizations are unwavering. Given the intensity and demand that their work entails, they may not notice they are experiencing problems until they reach an extreme sense of stress or burnout. Their commitment to success and effective strong leadership often comes at a price to their mental well-being and their relationships with friends and family.
As a result of their ability to lead people and organizations toward success and find solutions to problems, they may be perceived as highly competent, capable individuals that have it all figured out and do not need help. Hence, having mental health struggles can be perceived as shameful or a sign of personal deficiency. The pressure to perform not only impacts them at work and may extend at home to their family. The family’s wealth, status and success can also be at stake. This double pressure can be isolating for executives and can be experienced as leadership loneliness.
Maintaining mental wellness is critical for all individuals, especially to those who may feel pressure to appear super-human and invincible. Prioritizing wellness and finding healthy coping mechanisms not only alleviates stress and burnout, it also allows executives to perform at a high level while mitigating the stress within their roles. Partnering with a licensed mental health professional that is a good fit can assist individuals to develop a plan to improve their overall wellness while continuing being a top performing in their organization.