Everybody needs a sense of security and feeling as though they have enough money to meet their needs. Being in control of your day-to-day finance and having the financial freedom to make choices that allow you to enjoy life is fundamental to good mental health.
Coronavirus has made our world unrecognisable and the future is very uncertain. Uncertainty coupled with the looming recession means this years world mental health day is more important than ever, the severity is unclear but many experts expect a mental health crisis like no other, with frontline workers experiencing PTSD, and a rise in anxiety, depression, addiction and eating disorders in many of the general public.
Before new social distancing curbs were announced last week the consensus among scientistic community was that 8.5 per cent of the working age population would be jobless by the end of 2020, that is nearly 3 million people;
However now many believe those forecasts aren’t even close Professor Trevor Williams, of Derby University, former chief economist with Lloyds said “That figure is way too low, I would be looking at 13%.
To put this in perspective the financial crash in 2008 led to a high of 8.1% unemployment in 2011, and the miners’ strike of 1984-85 a major industrial action to shut down the British coal industry was 11.8%
As mental health affects people in different ways and varying levels of severity the statistics can be difficult to understand but one thing that is certain “The Government and the NHS must act now. We must not leave the nation’s mental health to chance.” Centre for Mental Health chief executive Sarah Hughes.
Centre for Mental Health chief economist Nick O’Shea said: “The numbers are stark. COVID-19 is a disaster for every country that has been badly affected, and the consequences for our mental health are just as severe. The challenge of meeting the mental health needs arising out of the pandemic may be as great as the many difficulties of responding to the virus.”
Mental health problems are on the rise in young people, Climate crisis, Coronavirus, Lack of opportunity and the increased pressures brought on by social media contribute to it and now their is growing evidence to suggest that the pandemic is fuelling generational divide, two thirds of 16- to 24-year-olds also said that their age group, Generation Z, will pay the economic price for a disease that has mostly affects older people, according to a survey by the Hope not Hate charitable trust, an anti-racism group.
It exposes the fears among new graduates and those who are unemployed or in low-paid jobs. It found 64% of young people in those groups felt anxious. “In the first stages of adulthood, many are feeling that the pandemic has stolen their future,” the analysis says.
Generation Z, have one real advantage, they are digital natives having grown up with technology like no other generation has and it is technology that will create opportunity for the young, many companies will now be looking for coding over classics. Their are dangers as Sophocles said “Nothing vast enters the life of mortals without a curse.” And social media is the perfect example of the dichotomy of technology … where technology has enabled the creation of a virtual online world of wondrous possibilities for its users, while it facilitates the decline of their physical world around them.
Technology is, however, undoubtedly a force for good and is the last, best, hope for our younger generation.
Modern technology is making a change in our business world with developments like robotics, chatbots, bitcoin, virtual reality, etc. but really it creates opportunity and recessions drive innovation. From Disney to Whatsapp some of the worlds largest and most successful businesses have been created during recessions.
The global pandemic could be the opportunity you have been looking for to follow your dreams, there is opportunity out their if you know where to look for it. Many courses that lead to a great career can be done interest free and with hard work and the right digital tools a successful future is possible for anybody.
So on World Mental Health day I would urge you all to think of the endless opportunities out there.
If you are struggling with your mental health please get help. Amazing free resources from The NHS, Mind and Samaritans can really help.