May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and as we come to the end of the month, I wanted to pause for a few moments of reflection about the importance of mental health awareness, not just in May but all year long!
Each year, Mental Health America, one of the leading organizations in the United States dedicated to helping people live more mentally healthy lives, chooses a specific theme to honor Mental Health Awareness Month. This year, they chose the theme “Look Around, Look Within.” The theme is intended to encourage us to consider the many factors that come into play regarding our mental health, such as the impact of our surroundings, our family health history, our education, our community support, and much, much more.
This theme really resonates with me. Over the past three years, as we’ve increasingly evolved into a geographically distributed company, I’ve developed a new phrase for myself when I think about teammates – I don’t care where you are, I care how you are. Working from home has many advantages, but it can also be isolating at times. I believe it’s incumbent on all of us to “look around” and see how our teammates are doing and offer extra support or a willing ear when you think they might need it.
I am particularly proud of our organization’s efforts to support our teammates’ mental health. Brown & Brown – both here at Absence Services Group and more broadly throughout the enterprise – has committed to and executed programming and made content readily available for our teammates to take advantage of. I am really proud to work for an organization and a leadership team that is so dedicated to our “brain health.” While mental health used to be a taboo topic in the workplace, we’ve come to understand that our brain health is essential to our physical health, family relationships, and our performance at work. In other words, you cannot bring your best self forward without investing in your mental health.
Mental Health America recently recognized the efforts put forth by our organization, certifying Brown & Brown with the Platinum Bell Seal earlier this year. The Bell Seal for Workplace Mental Health national certification program honors employers committed to creating mentally healthy workplaces. To be recognized as an organization for our commitment to mental well-being in our workplaces is truly an honor. At Brown & Brown, the mental health of our teammates and their families has always come first, and this recognition underscores our commitment to continuing this legacy.
While I am always pleased for the opportunity to spotlight mental health each May, the truth is every month should be dedicated to our mental health. It’s an evolving and never-ending journey for each of us, and I encourage you to continue yours!