Supporting the Mental Health of South African NPO's


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Mental Health Information

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As things get busier in the NPO sector, greater demands are placed on staff. We often feel that we are in constant ‘survival mode’ to keep up with all the changes and all the tasks we need to do, and that is apart from all the normal stresses we cope with on a daily basis.

Stress is caused by many factors and can have both physical and emotional symptoms. We have become so accustomed to being stressed at work, that at times, we don't even notice the symptoms.

Here are some self-help tips to reduce Stress within the workplace:

  • Check off your tasks: Trying to take care of everything at once can be overwhelming. Instead, make a list of what tasks you have to do, then do them one at a time, checking them off as they are completed. Give priority to the most important ones and do them first.
  • Must you always be right? Do other people upset you- particularly when things aren’t going your way? Try cooperation instead of confrontation; it’s better than fighting and always being ‘right’. A little give and take on both sides will reduce the strain and make you both feel more comfortable.
  • Create a quiet scene: You can’t always run away, but you can “dream the impossible dream”. A quiet country scene painted mentally, or canvas, can take you out of the turmoil of a stressful situation. Change the scene by reading a book or playing beautiful music to create a sense of peace or tranquility.
  • Know your limits: Try not to take on any new projects that will demand a lot of your time or commitment during the time of another large project. Ask: Can someone else do it? Can something be delayed? Is it essential?
  • Plan your day: Take care of the routine ‘’normal day work’’ in advance so that you can concentrate on more complex tasks/new tasks throughout the day with sufficient time. Keep the hours you work in check and be mindful of work-life balance and be realistic about what can be achieved.
  • Take care of yourself: Monitor warning signs of poor mental health. Get enough rest, eat a balanced diet. Maintain interests outside work like getting exercise and getting involved in fun activities that are a break from routine.
  • Maintain Support: Seek help from loved ones or mental health professionals if you are not coping. Speaking to someone may reduce the likelihood of mental health issues becoming worse. Stay in touch with family and friends or reach out to mentors and colleagues for support.


If you need more Mental Health self-help or information on Mental Health, please click here

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