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What Is Work Depression and How Do You Address It?

office chair sitting in front of a half open laptop that is on a desk

Depression affects over 17 million US adults every single year and can affect people from all walks of life. The common signs of depression are feelings of hopelessness, sadness, emptiness, and a general lack of interest in life.

Those suffering from depression may become fatigued, or may struggle to sleep or look after themselves properly. They may stop eating, or start excessively overeating, or can struggle making decisions and have difficulty concentrating. 

In some cases, depression can cause intrusive thoughts, lead to self harm, or even suicide when not treated. Depression can be brought on by traumatic experiences in life, the loss of a loved one, or after suffering abuse of some kind.

What Is Work Depression?

Depression can take over many aspects of your life. It can impact how you cope with relationships, stress, and how you navigate your day-to-day life. This, of course, can lead to changes in your attitude, general demeanor and how you perform in your career as well as personal life. 

Let’s face it. Not all of us love our jobs. Working can cause stress, anxiety and can leave individuals feeling overwhelmed without ample support. Work cannot, however, cause depression, but it can be a strong contributing factor as it’s a huge part of our day-to-day lives. 

You may also suffer from job burnout when work takes over your life and becomes so overwhelming that you struggle to cope. 

Signs You Have Work Depression

  • Inability to concentrate or focus on tasks
  • Struggle to retain information
  • Making excessive mistakes at work
  • Persistent feelings of sadness
  • Feeling helpless or worthless
  • Heightened anxiety levels
  • Inability to manage stressful situations
  • Thinking about work when away from your job or at home
  • Feeling complacent
  • Lack of motivation
  • Loss of productivity
  • Crying at work
  • Irritability
  • Absences from work
  • Self medication or substance abuse
office chair sitting in front of a half open laptop that is on a desk

What Are the Causes?

Often, job satisfaction is a leading factor in work depression. When you feel stressed or overwhelmed at work due to your workload or managers, this can quickly lead to feelings of hopelessness and sadness. 

It can also be caused by unreasonable demands or pressure such as working overtime or constantly feeling like you’re out of your depth. This can lead to a disrupted work-life balance, which can negatively impact your mental health and home life. In addition to this, unsatisfactory pay can lead to financial issues, which also stirs stress and worry. 

How to Address Work Depression

When people suffer from work depression, it can not only negatively affect their mental wellbeing, but it can also lead to absenteeism, increased substance abuse, lack of productivity, and a general negative workplace environment. 

If you feel depressed at work, it is vital that you speak to someone you trust within the company. This is particularly important if you are being bullied or mistreated in the workplace. If you do not feel supported or comfortable, then you need to report this to HR or take it further if needed.

In addition to this, it is very important that you speak to a therapist or counselor if you are suffering from feelings of depression and anxiety. You may benefit from cognitive-behavioral therapy or talking therapy to help you overcome your feelings of sadness and helplessness. This can not only boost your mental health but also boost morale and ensure that you feel happier and more supported in the workplace.  

Work can exaggerate feelings of depression, particularly if you’re in a tough working environment. If you are depressed at work, it is important that you reach out to your employer for help and support, and you should also speak to a therapist or counselor to work through your feelings and find the right course of action so that you can move forward through depression therapy.

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Green Heart Therapy provides in-person psychotherapy for adults, teens, and children in Los Angeles and online therapy across California.