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Workplace health and safety is primarily concerned with physical well-being: protocols focus on making sure employees don’t get strained, cut, smashed, broken, bruised, or physically ill. This is important, but it doesn’t address what may be the root of the problem: poor mental health. And it doesn’t recognize that mental well-being on its own falls under the workplace health and safety umbrella, and has a huge impact on work life.
After a week of multiple training sessions, I was exhausted. I returned my car rental and arrived at the airport five hours early to relax before a red eye flight home. Being a seasoned traveler, I watched the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) lines to decide which one to move into. The line I was in came to halt, so when I saw a gap in the line next to me, I took the opportunity to move over (for non-seasoned travelers, you can switch lines if you’re not cutting people off). Then, from behind me: “Really?” I didn’t realize the voice was talking to me until it was next to my ear, louder and more agitated. “Really?!” It was the woman behind me, a stranger.