Signs of Work Depression: The Things You Don’t See at Work

HHRC-man depressed at work

If you are experiencing sadness, anxiety, loss of motivation, difficulty focusing, a feeling of being overwhelmed, or unexpected episodes of sobbing while at work, chances are you suffering from work depression.

Work depression, also known as occupational stress, is a psychiatric disease characterized by persistent unpleasant feelings that can lead to physical and mental tiredness. Work depression impacts an individual’s capacity to complete duties and commitments efficiently. People who are prone to this illness frequently suffer distress, fear of failure, guilt, boredom, depression, and other symptoms.

While some stress is natural in the job, when it becomes depression, it may be psychologically and physically devastating. This article will explain the signs of work depression, what it actually is, and how to prevent it.

What Is Depression?

Depression is a psychological illness characterized by:

  • feelings of melancholy, emptiness, or hopelessness
  • outbursts of anger and a general feeling of irritability or frustration
  • inability to feel pleasure in everyday activities and a general loss of interest
  • erratic sleep patterns and bouts of oversleeping or insomnia
  • continuously feeling down or sad
  • a feeling of hopelessness and helplessness
  • low self-esteem
  • continual feelings of guilt
  • feeling irritated and intolerant
  • feeling a lack of motivation
  • inability to act decisively and make decisions

Depression impairs a person’s ability to do physical work activities 20% of the time and affects cognitive performance 35% of the time. Furthermore, depression is one of the top three workplace concerns reported to employee support providers, behind only family crises and stress, according to Mental Health America.

Work Depression: Is It Possible?

Work conditions can trigger depression or exacerbate symptoms in people already suffering from depression. Work causing depression is not an uncommon occurrence, and depending on the degree of stress and access to assistance, any workplace might be a cause or a contributing factor to depression.

A bad work environment, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), can result in:

  • concerns about emotional and physical health
  • absenteeism
  • productivity loss
  • increased substance consumption

As with any other health problem, early discovery and awareness are critical. Depression can be a complex disorder that manifests in a variety of ways. When we look at someone with workplace depression, there may be many factors involved, which can ultimately lead to addiction.

What Are the Signs of Work Depression?

Depression at work symptoms are comparable to general depressive symptoms. However, some may appear more specialized in a workplace situation. Depression will impact your ability to operate at work and home.

Some of the most prevalent symptoms of job depression are:

  • anxiety
  • general sentiments of boredom and apathy with your job
  • low energy and enthusiasm to perform duties
  • prolonged feelings of melancholy or depression
  • failure to concentrate or pay attention
  • making many mistakes in everyday work duties
  • weight gain or loss, or changes in appetite
  • physical problems such as headaches, tiredness, and stomach distress
  • increasing absenteeism, late arrivals, and early departures
  • decreased ability to make decisions

These indicators of work sadness may be invisible to your coworkers if you are skilled at disguising or internalizing them. However, some signs are harder to hide and, as such, more easily recognized by your coworkers.

Here are some frequent warning signs of job depression:

  • retreat or separation from others
  • a lack of self-care or a substantial change in appearance
  • workplace tardiness
  • poor work performance
  • general disinterest
  • fatigued appearance for much or all of the day
  • irritability

Why Are You Depressed at Work?

There are several reasons why you could be experiencing an increase in depression symptoms at work. While no two people — or situations — are alike, several similar elements appear to emerge when identifying the reasons or triggers of indicators of depression at work.

The following situations, while not exhaustive, may lead to job depression:

  • having the impression that you have no control over work-related concerns
  • believing that your job is at risk
  • working in a hazardous environment
  • overworking while being underpaid
  • being subjected to workplace harassment or discrimination
  • working erratic hours
  • insufficient work-life balance
  • working in an environment that does not reflect your personal ideals
  • performing work that does not advance your career

The Relationship Between Stress, Burnout, and Depression

Burnout is a psychological condition resulting from the inability to manage workplace stress. Burnout applies specifically to the workplace and is typically characterized by lethargy, a mental disconnect from one’s job, and an inability to produce results and reach goals.

There is a great deal of overlap between burnout and depression. Burnout that is not addressed might lead to depression. Burnout is commonly cured with positive workplace adjustments. However, depression produces enough disturbances in the mind and body that a doctor, therapist, or other supporting professional may be required to assist in recovery.

When we are sad or burned out, we view stressors as cumulative, and our overall appraisal of the workplace suffers as a result. We see it as a stressful, poisonous place rather than a sequence of controllable unpleasant occurrences that may be handled.

Dealing with Depression At Work: What To Do?

Depression is a serious disorder that can have substantial consequences in a person’s life. Long hours, high stress levels, and a lack of support at work can all contribute to depression.

If you are experiencing burnout, your first step should be to speak with your immediate supervisor or boss. They can collaborate with you to discover improvements that may alleviate your symptoms. If such improvements do not help, it may be time to consult your doctor or therapist for more treatment.

Some helpful tips for dealing with depression include: taking proper pauses during the day and participating in activities that offer joy and relaxation, such as exercise, meditation, or spending time with friends and family. Talking candidly about how you feel with trustworthy colleagues or friends might also help you manage work-related depression.

Key Takeaway

Remember that you are not alone. Even if your coworkers appear to be managing things well, this does not invalidate your mental health.

Workplace stress is natural and to be anticipated, but coping with chronic stress that never seems to go away or thoughts of despair is not. The first step in getting assistance is recognizing the signs and symptoms of burnout and depression.

Depression is a medical condition that frequently needs the assistance of a doctor or other supportive practitioner. It may require a mix of therapies to provide comfort and improvement.

Get the help you need from Haven House Recovery.

Workplace depression is a genuine problem that may have major consequences for both mental and physical health. Recognizing symptoms and signs of work depression such as anxiety, sobbing, boredom, and loss of interest is the first step toward therapy. The second step is to seek expert assistance from a professional like Haven House Recovery, a trusted drug rehab in Nashville, TN.

Haven House Recovery can help you recognize and prevent depression-trigger factors and manage depression. Speak with us right away if you are experiencing depressive symptoms at work or elsewhere.