A Mental Burden: When Stress Becomes an Obligation

Employees grow in stature in a company to which they choose to be loyal. Their tenure usually merits all kinds of benefits, such as higher pay, respect, and probably a managerial position. But it’s generally unavoidable for workers in such a position to receive an increase in stress, as well. In fact, a senior employee will always deal with more mental burdens, as he or she has a greater level of responsibility, or may be in charge of a implementing a project, or of maintaining the efficiency of an entire team.

Many people don’t mind the pressure, to an extent; ask anyone who has ever received a promotion as a result of their hard work. But, the stress also becomes an obligation, as tasks and responsibilities to the company all weigh upon a person’s mind. While everyone realizes that stress comes with the territory of promotion and career advancement, sometimes, the levels are too high to efficiently manage.  When stress becomes excessive, is it really your fault or does the company have a hand in it by expecting or demanding too much?

How Can Stress Be So Serious?

Everybody is aware that stress is a part of most every facet of life. The culture of accepting, even embracing it, however, probably goes too far. In Japan and South Korea, a big part of career and work involves is dealing with an inordinate amount of stress. In western countries, such attitudes may not be as commonplace, but it is still a problem in high-pressure industries. Nonetheless, if stress strikes the wrong individual in the wrong way, the consequences could be severe.

Furthermore, stress is way more than a mental burden. The mind-and-body connection is such that any variation in emotion or state of mind will reflect physically. Nobody enjoys long-term stress, and when you put such a heavy strain on your nervous system, it’s bound to affect everything else. From tension-type headaches to rapid breathing to poorer cardiac health to overproduction of certain hormones – a lot of conditions can not only originate from but also worsen with stress.

This is why relaxation and balance are a part of a healthy working lifestyle. Taking on only what you can handle at work and having time off never did anyone any harm, but some people find they do not have that choice. Advancement, expectation, and responsibilities get in the way of them finding respite from work. The question is, is the situation a personal choice or something that the company has put on them?

A Legally Actionable Event

Injury can come in a variety of ways, with a “mental sprain and strain” being no less of an affliction as a physical one. Considering that mental stress can make you physically sick, it’s a heavy price to pay just to satisfy the standards enforced by your company. If you don’t see the assistance you need or the recognition you deserve, and this has become procedure within your company, it’s possible that a lawyer can help you in the matter.

The main objective here is to ensure that a company does not take advantage of your loyalty, as its employee. It’s not right for a corporation to give you so much work for a reward that is not commensurate to the weight of what is expected of you. And, if you so happen to develop a stress-related sickness because of the excessive work, this compounds the matter. If the situation continues without proper compensation, you can seek legal recourse, remarks Wisconsin’s Mays Law Office.

If you’re showing signs of illness that you haven’t had before, it’s a good measure to take a stress test. Stress is one of the reasons a perfectly healthy person will suddenly fall sick, and it will affect you in ways that you didn’t know possible. It’s the kind of injury that will wear you out, despite functioning as a fully able individual (that is to say, without any physical incapacity).

Anyone looking at this option must be certain of their impairment. A mental-related workplace injury isn’t a commonplace case. It’s not a visible injury, like a loss of limb or any kind of debilitation, and any claim must come with concrete proof. So, read about what stress causes, its effects on the body and mind, and have a medical professional confirm your suspicions.

These are matters that you can – and should – discuss with your lawyer, so he or she can explain your options.

Alternative Cases of Origin

Everyone is well aware that stress can arise from traumatic events or from any job, but people may not be familiar with the possible dire consequences of extreme stress. Take soldiers, for example, and the otherworldly trauma they experience. People may be familiar with PTSD, but they can barely grasp the gravity of the effects of PTSD on the people – such as servicemen and women – who struggle with it.

As for regular day jobs, they can also be sources of great mental strain. One legal case involved compensation for an employee, a deputy sheriff, who witnessed a suicide while on the job. It was a tragic circumstance, and the appellate court actually agreed that what the sheriff experienced qualified under Wisconsin’s “unexpected and unforeseen” criteria. This shows that what may be deemed a weak case, by traditional standards, may still be worth fighting for.

Another case happened decades ago and involved a nurse and a group of aggressive patients. The aggressors attacked some of the passive patients, and the nurse had to intervene. The notable event in this situation was a patient smearing fecal matter on the face of the nurse. The case, however, initially didn’t go well for the nurse, and bounced back and forth from compensation commission to court. Plus, the nurse had a pre-existing depressive condition, which the commission deemed integral to her developing a mental condition, as such, denied her benefits. Ultimately, though, the denial of benefits was reversed by the South Carolina Supreme Court.

Statutes have changed since then, and it’s now possible to bring such a case to a commission or court of law with likely different outcomes, and less ambiguity or hostility.

Your benefits can range from coverage of medical expenses to compensation for lost wages, which the court will determine as the case progresses. As always with personal injury cases, the severity of your injury will play a part in how much or what you’ll get, by way of compensation.

There is a wide interpretation of what injury is, and whether or not it prevents you from fulfilling your duties. But, physical disability is hardly the only thing that makes a person incapable, especially if their job isn’t really reliant on manual labor. There are many kinds of jobs with different stresses, and there’s no telling how serious a trauma can be in a particular line of work. This is why there are legal options for workers to take when the circumstances become especially problematic.

Though no one may seem at fault, the damage is there. Someone has to be responsible, and there isn’t always a straight answer– which is why it is to your advantage to have a lawyer by your side, and a judge to decide the matter. You don’t have to be alone when it comes to any kind of injury interfering with your daily life; and most especially when it is the kind of injury that affects something as valuable as your mind.