Helping minds flourish

Our mind health is just as important as our physical

We often think of our mind and body as separate, but our mental and physical health are connected and just as important as each other. We need to priorities them both in equal parts so we can be the best version of ourselves. To understand the current state of mind health1 across the globe, AXA surveyed 11,000 people from 11 countries across Europe and Asia.

How are you feeling?

In the UK, almost 2 in 5 people say they suffer from a mental health condition – the highest response in Europe.

UK workplaces need to scale up their support

Only 40% agree that their employer provides good support regarding their mental health.

A healthy mind gives us the ability to think, feel and act in a way that allows us to enjoy life and deal with the challenges that come our way. The AXA Mind Health Study shows that the pandemic has had a major effect on people’s mind health, particularly on front line workers, those living alone, or with pre-existing conditions. And there are higher stress levels among women, especially those aged 18-24.

In the workplace, managers in particular are at the highest risk of poor mental health, with one in four experiencing a mental health condition. The good news is that organisations which do prioritise mental health can make a real difference, with the study showing that those who are supported at work are 1.6 times more likely to be happy and almost twice as likely to flourish.

While our new research shows that the UK’s workplace culture is becoming kinder and more empathetic, many organisations still need to do more to ensure they’re providing enough mental health support to their workforce or making sure their employees know what’s available. The pandemic has posed many challenges, but one positive is that it has allowed us to have more open conversations about mental health at work. Leaders should be using this opportunity to look at the support they’re providing and where gaps may be. Our study shows that organisations which support the mental health of their employees will not only benefit from a happier, healthier and more productive workforce, they will benefit wider society too. It really is a win-win for everyone.

Claudio Gienal, CEO, AXA UK&I

Headshot of Claudio Gienal, Chief Executive Officer, AXA UK and Ireland

The UK is leading the way when it comes to mental health awareness, with 50% of people saying the stigma associated with mental health is declining as a result of the pandemic. And there is a desire to share this outlook further, with 82% of UK parents seeing mental health as an important issue to discuss with their children. This suggests a much-needed shift towards prevention, where people take positive steps to be healthier and happier.

Kindness: the lasting legacy of the pandemic

50% of people in the UK acknowledge that they’re being kinder to themselves and 53% said that caring for others is more of a priority than it was two years ago.

Headshot of Amy Conroy, GB Paralympian and AXA Mind Health Ambassador

It’s so positive that people think the stigma around mental health is declining. Feeling like you are able to have open and honest conversations about your mental health with loved ones, healthcare professionals or your employers is so important and can be game changing. I think it is absolutely brilliant that this study has shown that people are seeing more kindness around them. Random acts of kindness, however small, can stay with someone for a long time. I think the power of a smile to a stranger, a small compliment, or having a chat with a homeless person should never be underestimated. Plus, once you start doing more kind acts, you start noticing they are all around and it helps remind you that people really are inherently good. It’s the secret to happiness, I reckon.

Amy Conroy, GB Paralympian and AXA Mind Health Ambassador

How can we help support you?

Read the AXA Mind Health Study

Get valuable insight into the state of mind health across the UK, Europe and Asia, including how we react to stress, diagnose mental illness and improve our happiness and wellbeing.

Manage your stress, anxiety and depression

You don’t need to deal with difficult feelings alone, AXA Health is here to support you.

Support for parents and carers

Dr Joshua Harwood, Child Clinical Psychologist, shares practical tips to help children and young people cope with their feelings.

The small business guide to health insurance

What is private health insurance and how can small business owners benefit?

1 We’ve chosen the expression ‘mind health’ to promote the idea of emotional, psychological and social wellbeing.