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Managers Corner

State of Depression


State of Depression

Mental health affects how we think and feel about our lives. That feeling has an impact on our behavior and how we cope in good and tough times. The most common mental health conditions include anxiety, bi-polar disorder, depression, hyperactivity, insomnia, mania, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), panic attacks and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). With antidepressants being the most commonly form of prescribed medication in the United States today, it appears we are in a sad state of mind.

However, many doctors readily admit that antidepressants are often prescribed because of cost. Patients can often afford prescription co-pays over the cost of seeing a mental health specialist. Also, research shows that the national average to go from a referral from your primary doctor to an appointment with a mental health specialist is 4 to 8 weeks (in non-emergent cases only).

As we began to write this month’s newsletter, we asked one of our personal doctors her opinion if cost and time ever factored into her decisions with patients. She told us that in the real world, doctors know they sometimes have one chance to get patients, especially ones presenting signs of depression, some kind of care. She recommends counseling and makes referrals to her psychology peers but she cares for them how she can while she has the chance.

Clinical depression only takes 2 weeks to develop. Many doctors begin patients on an antidepressant to bridge the gap until they can see a counselor or psychologist. But by then, the emotional need feels less urgent and the cycle of “This medication seems to be working for me…” begins.

Stress or Mental Illness?

When tragedy strikes, such as the recent news of a co-pilot for Lufthansa’s airline Germanwings intentionally crashing into the French Alps, we look for answers. What makes a young man kill himself and 149 others? What would make this man take his own life along with the lives of his innocent passengers? One possible answer revealed that the he had previously suffered from deep depression. Discussions began about how the pilot’s mental health affected the tragedy. What treatment had he received and whether his employers should have let him fly at all.

That nature of that discussion is an issue that is most often ignored in the workplace… Mental health, stress and unrealistic workloads are more commonly met with canned speeches about being “a company based on family values” or one that “encourages a healthy work family balance.” Who among us has ever been told us to stop working so many hours, only to be then handed more work and asked why deadlines are being missed all in one day? We can’t see you but we’ll assume hands are being raised!

When it comes to chronic stress, depression or mental health in the workplace, the main problem for companies isn’t absenteeism as much as it is the effected employee overworking out of panic that they may not be performing up to par. This general overcompensation is fueled by fear that co-workers or management may think less of them, rather than offering help. In reality, just as with any illness, the person needs time, treatment and care without any stigma attached to his or her full recovery. To simply believe any of us could or should be expected to suffer through any form of “un”wellness or work in environments of endless stress without impacting the atmosphere around us is absurd.

“To date, companies have focused on physical health much more than they have on mental health,” says Professor John A. Quelch, Charles Wilson Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School. In collaboration with Carin-Isabel Knoop, executive director of the HBS Case Research & Writing Group, he recently wrote the note, Mental Health and the American Workplace, exploring the extent of the phenomenon, its cost to organizations and employees, and some managerial responses.

Perhaps it’s the social effects of mental health issues that keep workers from admitting they are suffering. “There is a pick-yourself-up-by-your-bootstraps philosophy that is still prevalent in many companies,” says Quelch. “We develop other words to talk about mental health—we call it ‘stress’ or call on people to be ‘resilient.’”

“If someone has diabetes and they have to manage that chronic condition, no one bats an eyelid,” says Quelch. “But if I say I have to manage a mental health problem, co-workers and the human resource department may start getting nervous. It’s presumed that mental health issues are more under an individual’s control.”

Create a Culture of Care

A 2013 survey by the American Psychiatric Association found that one-third of working Americans experienced chronic work stress, while only 16% reported their employers provided adequate support to manage it. Our culture of 3 a.m. emails and conference room competition is contributing to workplace stress. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, over 7% of American adults experience “major depressive disorder.”

Clearly, corporate America has some work to do in the area of improving home/work balance in today’s technology driven workforce. Those of us with company issued laptops and the “luxury” of working from home can say first hand, those conveniences are most a blessing and a curse. It can feel like you NEVER leave work.

Health care has some work to do as well but there are options. If you are having issues with stress, depression, anxiety or any mental health issue, we urge you to see your doctor. Denial and self-medicating is not a long-term solution.

They say that the culture of a company starts from the top level and trickles throughout the corporation. We’ve all likely seen positive and negative examples where this theory has proven to be true. Perhaps this theory is also true with people. But, it’s up to us to create a culture of care that begins inside of us. While we cannot prevent all health issues; mental or physical, we can care for ourselves with exercise, diet, activity, companionship and lots of love.

Club News


Member Spotlight: Josh Duncan

My name is Joshua Duncan, and currently I work as a Associate Youth Pastor at Central Baptist Church in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. My job can sometimes be very rigorous with setting up for Wednesday Night programming, running around playing games with middle and high school students. My work environment often times does not promote healthy eating because of lunch meetings and the large number of people dropping off baked goodies for our office staff. When I turned 30 this past October I knew I needed to make a change. The opportunity finally presented itself when Kristin told me about the PerFit application. I go to the gym often and do not know what combination of workouts gets me the results that I want. This application has helped me tremendously. I have lost 16inches, and 13lbs within first month and a half of using this application. Also changing my eating habits and paying attention to my nutrition through a program called Isagenix, has helped me as well. The cost for using the application is so affordable. I'm not where I want to be, but I'm defiantly not going back to where I used to be.


Trainer Spotlight: Kristen Majerus, ACSM-CPT

I originally met Josh through church when I went to college in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. He later participated in an exercise program that I lead during my internship, and we have periodically touched based on his exercise habits and goals since then. When I was informed about the new features of the Prairie Life PerFit App, Josh was the first person who came to my mind. I knew that he went to the gym frequently, but struggled with knowing what to do once he got there. He has greatly benefited from having specific workouts to do and specific days to do them on. The workouts come directly to his phone, so it’s really convenient for him to use and provides the extra accountability he needs to stay on track throughout the week. I am so proud of what Josh has already accomplished on reaching his goals, and know that he is only getting started!
To contact Kristin and to find out more about her on PerFit you can email her at  or visit us online at  or .

Manager's Corner

Mother, May We Celebrate You?


There are many reasons to love the month of May; warm weather, flowers in bloom, summer vacation is on the horizon but our favorite reason is to celebrate Mother's Day. Each and everyday, the club is filled with dedicated moms who are balancing a family, job and still finding time for themselves. We love that about all of you. You’re endless supply of energy, enthusiasm and involvement in your health and your kids’ lives inspire all of us.

May also brings us Armed Forces Day and Memorial Day. We salute those have or are now serving our country. Many members are preparing for a graduation party this month as one of their children start a new chapter in their lives. PLF looks forward to being part of their lives as they grow, get married and have babies of their own. Whaaat? Slow down? Let them graduate and get through college first? Well, okay but we consider you family and love when the next generation of a family starts to grow with us. But, we’ll take it one step at a time.

PILATES REFORMER – Mother’s and Father’s Day Specials coming soon!  See club postings, the front desk, and Nancy Babe for details.

TANNING - $10 off any tanning package for the month of May!

Refer a friend or family member and get a $25 credit on your account.  See Membership for details. 

COMING SOON!  Prairie Life Fitness at Midtown will be working with Midtown Crossing to bring Wednesday Night Workouts in the Park.  Events will be held at 5:30pm May-July in Turner Park.  The May dates, trainers and formats are:





June and July’s Line-up can be viewed online on Midtown’s Facebook page as well as Midtown Crossing’s Facebook page.     

PERSONAL TRAINING – Check out and download our PerFit Application today!  It is a great way to reach your goals with the help of a personal trainer even if you can’t make it into the gym.  Check out our application online at  or .


May 11th – July 3rd

8 Week Program, 2 Sessions a Week

Cardio, Core & Functional Strength Training

Enjoy Workouts Outside

Monday’s& Friday’s 6:15PM – 7:00PM

Sessions Starting at $12.50 a Session$200 Cost

Reserve Your Spot Today

Up to 8 Members Max and a Minimum of 3

To Sign-Up Contact Brent Pyle, or call 402-916-5000.

MASSAGE THERAPY – Mother’s and Father’s Day Special coming soon! Purchase three 60 minute massages for $180.  See club postings for dates and details.   

Don’t forget to look at the summer class schedule when planning for summer activities. Also, when you’re on vacay; remember to use the PerFit App to keep you on track.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Carrie Hoops

perfit exercise of the month

Walking Lunges - Perfect for at Home or on the Go!

Click above to see a video of our Exercise of the month and click below to download PerFit, available on both iPhone and Android!



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