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#38: Cultivate Mental Health and Wellness in Your Workplace with Dr. Kensa Gunter

February 15, 2023 in

Cultivate Mental Health and Wellness in Your Workplace with Dr. Kensa Gunter

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), an estimated 12 billion workdays are lost annually due to depression and anxiety costing the global economy nearly US $1 trillion.   

What is your organization doing to accommodate the needs of workers with mental health conditions? Mental health is becoming more and more of a focus for many people as they become more aware of its role in their overall health. However, beyond the remaining stigma for mental health, some do not give it the priority it deserves—mental healthcare is treated more as a response rather than a preventative practice. 

We tend to forgo mental healthcare practices until we encounter stressors or challenges in our lives. But just like how we regularly exercise and maintain healthy diets for our bodies, our minds also require good habits to stay healthy. So, what can we do to put more preventative mental self-care methods into our lives? 

Our guest today is Dr. Kensa Gunter of Gunter Psychological Services. She is a renowned Clinical and Sport Psychologist (CMPC) based in Atlanta, Georgia, with a mission to humanize mental health and performance discussions while reducing stigma in the world of sports. She is the Director of the NBA Mind Health, an initiative focusing on the league’s mental health and wellness. She has also served as the immediate Past President of the Association for Applied Sport Psychology and membership in the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee’s External Mental Health Taskforce, demonstrating her commitment to advancing mental health initiatives on a larger scale. 

Join Dr. Eric Bean and Dr. Kensa Gunter to learn about how we can improve our care for ourselves and elevate our performance.

Key Points:

  1. We should humanize the discussion surrounding mental health and performance in any context. 
  2. There is no such thing as a quick fix regarding mental health and performance. It takes commitment and consistent maintenance 
  3. We should maintain our mental health through healthy habits and preventative measures like (1) proper sleep, (2) movement, (3) social support, (4) mindfulness, and (5) activities that help us disconnect from noise and connect with the moment. 

Episode Highlights

  • [01:34] Introducing Dr. Kensa Gunter 
  • [05:38] The stigma surrounding mental healthcare  
  • [07:05] Dr. Gunter’s current roles and passions 
  • [14:19] How Dr. Gunter developed her passion for mental health 
  • [20:07] How Dr. Gunter responded to the hardship she experienced 
  • [23:50] Dr. Gunter on humanizing the discussions in the overlapping circles of mental health, performance, wellness, culture, and sports 
  • [30:23] Humanity as the center of Dr. Gunter’s philosophy of high-performance 
  • [35:05] How Dr. Gunter helps individuals who are having difficulty reaching their desired level of performance 
  • [41:53] The “Quick Fix” misconception about sports psychology 
  • [45:30] The difference between mental health and mental performance 
  • [50:09] On how to further reduce the stigma about mental health 
  • [54:38] How a leader can balance challenge and support for their team 
  • [59:59] Strategies individuals can do to maintain their mental health. 
  • [1:04:45] Recommended reading 

Resources Mentioned:

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