Save Our Souls — The Mental Health Crisis Facing Companies

Courtney Branson
7 min readJun 9, 2022

Companies can impact mental health by letting go of individualism and improving the quality of life for their employees.

Photo by Hybrid on Unsplash

People are not okay.

I fear for the world my daughter inherits; the loss of soul in America to let the planet and children die for profits, the stoking of hate for power, of being the first generation to leave daughters with fewer rights than their mothers. My grief is not unique. My fear is not unique. There is collective grief, collective fear.

Yet, every day I see people getting up to do honest work for the very companies participating in profits over the planet and people. It’s created a dissonance, where financial security is tied to places that don’t see you.

Mental health is a crisis.

The grief, the fear, the dissonance coupled with the “urgency” and “productivity” of work destroy mental health. Even though all of these things are part of systems within capitalism, companies often see mental health as an individual problem. Sure, they’ll offer mindfulness classes to attract candidates but leave the root causes untouched.

It’s classic America. We have quite the love affair with individualism. We encourage individuals to arm themselves with guns for protection. We glorify the rags to riches stories. We credit the individuals for their success, and when something goes wrong, it’s the individual to blame, not the systems.

A company is a microcosm of our bigger culture.

The logic I received as a child was𑁋an individual is in poverty because they didn’t try hard enough. No one mentioned the racism, wealth disparity, poor health care, lack of education access, and abysmal human infrastructure. If I wanted the American dream, all I had to do was work hard and alone.

The reality is how truly very hard it is to do it alone. I see people clinging to individualism because it lets them feel wholly responsible for their achievements. This mindset permeates companies because a company is a microcosm of our bigger culture. So, companies feel empowered to neglect human infrastructure unless it clearly benefits them.