Because most millwrights consider themselves tough men and women – and because of a dangerous stigma throughout our society – mental health is not something we usually talk about. That’s not how it should be, though. The construction industry and millwrights in particular have much higher rates of depression and suicide than the general population.
Construction workers are SIX TIMES more likely to die by suicide than in a workplace accident, and millwrights have the second HIGHEST suicide rate of all construction trades. At a rate of 78 suicides per 100,000 workers, millwrights have almost double the construction industry’s rate of 43.5 suicides per 100,000 workers and are FIVE TIMES more likely to die by suicide compared to the general population.
As part of Mental Health Awareness Month in May, the SSMRC has joined forces with Domain Wellness Partners to provide information about causes and solutions to mental-health challenges associated with our trade. Throughout this month, we will offer education about mental wellness and the impact of poor mental health on ourselves, our families, and our communities, along with resources for improving mental health. Information will be added to the sections below describing the eight domains of mental wellness.
Why focus on 8 domains?
Your life is made up of specific, connected areas or domains that are all important, to some degree, to your quality of life. If you are satisfied in your domains, you will have a higher quality of life. When you have a high quality of life, you have good mental health. Your domains, and what is important to you within your domains, can be your guide. Anytime you take action that moves you toward what is important to you, you are moving closer to good mental health.
Your change and growth all starts with getting in touch with the eight domains in your life (see below) and determining where you are satisfied and where you are not satisfied. Once you figure out where you are not satisfied, you can decide what actions to take to be more satisfied in those areas.
Why does it start here? It is difficult to be satisfied and fulfilled in these areas of your life and be anxious or depressed at the same time. But if you become more unfulfilled or dissatisfied, the more likely you will become depressed or anxious.
Below is information about each of the eight domains. During the month of May, we will be adding more information about each of these domains.
Your Mental & Physical Health:
This domain is about your total and complete well-being – the mind/body connection. Mental and physical well-being are intertwined, deeply connected, and cannot be separated. This is the most important domain. If you take care of your mental and physical well-being, everything else in your life will be better.
This is your closest relationship with any other person. Even if you are not currently in a committed romantic relationship, you can evaluate this domain based on what you want your next relationship to look like.
Photo: Local 1554 member Jesse Beilig and his wife Hallie Beilig
The career domain also includes, by extension, your finances. Your job is likely the area where you spend the most time, with the exception of time spent on relationships. It can give you purpose outside of others. Your relationship with your finances is about more than just money. It’s also about security. How you handle your finances is related to how you view yourself.
Your Children & Family:
Parenting is about how you see your role in your children’s lives. Family encompasses the family you came from, your current immediate family, and your connection to all extended family members.
Photo: Donnie Newton, business agent for Local 216, with his wife and children
Your Faith & Spirituality:
This is your belief in something greater outside of yourself. What does this belief look like to you? How do you connect with this belief?
Your Friendships & Community:
Humans are social creatures by nature. What are your social needs and preferences? Do you crave connection to a close-knit group with a few tried and true members or to a larger group with a common purpose?
Photo: [from left] Local 216 Business Agent Matt Nowlin, John Daly Jr., Local 216 member John Neeley, and SSMRC Political Director Rick Halford at a Community Services, Inc. golf tournament
Your Learning & Personal Growth:
Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving. – Albert Einstein
Personal growth is easiest when we no longer hold ourselves to a standard of perfection. Life is much more exciting and fulfilling when treated as an experiment, with no expected result in mind.
Your Adventure, Artistic Expression, & Leisure:
Do you have a need to discover and explore? Or do you have an artist inside of you, whose creativity must be regularly fed? Or maybe your idea of a perfect day is finding a quiet place to read a good book. Or perhaps you have a need for all three parts of this domain.
Photo: Member April Crownhart-Swan with her race car
The information available through this page provides guidance for finding fulfillment and satisfaction in the eight domains of your life. Additional resources related to the domains give you the opportunity to work through mental-health topics privately and at your own pace. Click the button below to learn about these resources, available from Domain Wellness Partners.
Assistance also is available through your health plan, which likely offers support for mental-health and substance-abuse treatment. You often receive mental-health and substance-abuse-treatment services at low or no cost when you access them through a health plan. This can reduce financial stress (related to one of the domains), which affects mental health.
Several health plans cover members of our council, and your local determines which plan is available to you. To learn the details of your coverage, read your plan documents, check with your plan’s insurance-network partner, or contact your plan administrator (contact information can be found on your local’s page). Your administrator can provide a current copy of your health plan.
Other sources of help include: