Caring Colleague – Week 1 – Social Support at Work Promotes Mental Health

Research shows that social support improves quality of life, resilience to stress and psychological well-being. The importance of social support at work is therefore the first topic of Aker Care’s Caring Colleague campaign.

Studies indicate that individuals with adequate social relationships are 50 percent less likely to die prematurely compared with those who have poor or insufficient relationships.

“The health benefits from experiencing social support are comparable with quitting smoking or stop being inactive,” says Aker Care Psychologist Jan Martin Berge.

Helps prevent stress
Social support also increases resilience to stress and may moderate genetic and environmental vulnerabilities, thus protecting against diseases.

Moreover, several studies have demonstrated that having a sufficient network of supportive relationships contributes to psychological well-being.

Having a good social support network has the following benefits:

  • Sense of belonging: Spending time with people helps against loneliness, whether it is fishing buddies, siblings or good colleagues. Just knowing one is not alone makes handling stress easier.
  • Increased sense of self-worth: Having friends around reinforces the idea of being a good person to be with.
  • Feeling of security: A person’s social network provides access to information, advice, guidance and other types of assistance if needed. It is comforting to know that you have people to turn to when needed.