Pondering where to explore: men’s mental health, workplace wellbeing, or social sector burnout

I’m in the mood for a new project. I need to create something meaningful and useful.

2 min readFeb 2, 2024

I don’t have a specific problem to solve or change I want to see.

I have a space to explore: mental health and wellbeing.


I’ve experienced burnout. It left me mentally scrambled. I felt low. A bit lost. I feel for others who have experienced similar things.

I co-created this discovery report, investigating wellbeing of migration sector staff. Nearly all the people we interviewed had poor mental health.

I’m no expert, but I have some lived experience, and I’m fired up to help.

There are 3 areas I was thinking about exploring

Men’s mental health

Men don’t look after their mental health. Men are less likely to talk about their feelings. Men account for three-quarters of suicide deaths in the UK.

These things are a concern.

When working on a project, I like to have some things defined. Looking at men’s mental health means the audience is defined. Some questions I have: How and why is men’s mental health different to women? What is the “user journey” of poor mental health in men? What male-focused interventions currently exist? Where are the biggest problems and unmet needs?

I’m interested in this area, but “mental health” feels too broad. May revisit.

Workplace wellbeing

This one also feels too broad. The workplace is vast. So many industries and different-sized organisations. My instinct tells me there’s a competitive market offering a range of products, services and solutions.

I don’t feel a connection here. I need a more focused area.

Social sector burnout

This feels closer to home. I have lived experience of burnout. It happened while working for the non-profit sector.

There’s been tons written about burnout in the non-profit sector (I’ll share a big list of articles soon). But I haven’t seen many good solutions, and I sense we’re not heading in the right direction.

My initial questions: How serious is burnout in the social sector? What impact is it having on the sector? How do people in the sector experience burnout? What causes their burnout? How do we recover from burnout? What exists to prevent and support recovery of burnout?

I feel a connection here. This is where I’ll start.