The training and evaluation in a project management apprenticeship course can be demanding and stressful at times, and it’s essential to prioritise your well-being to ensure success and overall happiness.
In this article, we’ll explore some tips and strategies for looking after your mental health during your project management apprenticeship, including challenges apprentices may face, how to overcome stigma and seek help, and self-care practices to incorporate into your daily routine.
Remember, taking care of your mental health is not only essential for your success as a project manager apprentice, but for your overall well-being in all aspects of your life.
What is a Project Management Apprenticeship?
A project management apprenticeship is a structured learning programme designed to develop knowledge, skills and experience needed to become a successful project manager. It is a combination of on-the-job training and classroom teaching that can last from 12 to 24 months.
Apprenticeships are offered by a wide range of organisations, including government agencies, private companies, and non-profit organisations. They can be a great way to gain practical experience and develop valuable project management skills, while also earning a salary and often having the opportunity to earn industry-recognised certifications.
Upon completion of the apprenticeship, individuals will have gained a combination of skills, experience and a professional qualification to help pursue a career in project management. Provek offer the Level 4 Associate Project Manager apprenticeship programme, which we deliver over 13 months. In addition to the apprenticeship (where successful learners will achieve a pass/merit/distinction), the programme also incorporates the APM PMQ qualification.
As a specialist in project management training, Provek also offer training and development courses in project management and project management bootcamp style training. These courses are shorter than an apprenticeship (typically 2-5 days), develop project management skills and focus on preparing delegates to take an exam to achieve a professional qualification at the end of the course.
How to identify the signs of Mental Health Issues
Once you have started the process of how to become a project manager you will start to gain project management knowledge, skills and experience very quickly. For some, juggling an apprenticeship with additional work and home pressures can become overwhelming, so it is important to ensure that you can identify signs of mental health issues to seek help if needed.
The signs can vary depending on the individual and the specific mental health issue, but some common signs to look out for include changes in behaviour or mood, difficulty concentrating, withdrawing from social activities, changes in sleep or appetite, and feelings of hopelessness or worthlessness. If you notice any of these signs in yourself or someone else, it’s important to reach out for support.
Overcoming Stigma and Seeking Help
Overcoming the stigma surrounding mental health issues can be challenging, but it’s an important step in seeking help and improving your well-being. It’s important to remember that mental health issues are common and nothing to be ashamed of.
If you’re struggling with your mental health during your apprenticeship, know that you’re not alone and that there is help available. Don’t be afraid to reach out to your employer, mentor, or a mental health professional for support. Seeking help is a sign of strength, and taking care of your mental health is essential to your success and overall well-being. (For learners on Provek’s apprenticeship, if you are unsure what support may be available to you, the resources included in your Bud activity “Well-being Support” will be a good starting point. Your trainer/skills coach can also support you with study planning if this is causing anxiety).
Balancing Work and Mental Health
Balancing work and mental health can be challenging, especially during an apprenticeship where you may be juggling a lot of responsibilities. It’s important to prioritise your mental health and find ways to manage stress and maintain a healthy work-life balance. One way to do this is to set realistic goals and boundaries for your work and personal life, and to communicate these boundaries with your employer and colleagues.
You can also try incorporating self-care practices into your daily routine, such as exercise, meditation, or spending time with loved ones. Remember, taking care of your mental health is not selfish or indulgent – it’s essential for your overall well-being and success in your Level 4 Associate Project Manager apprenticeship and beyond.
Taking Care of Your Mental Health Beyond the Apprenticeship
Taking care of your mental health beyond the apprenticeship is just as important as during the programme. You may have developed self-care practices during your apprenticeship that have helped you manage stress and prioritise your well-being. It’s important to continue these practices and to also seek out additional resources if needed.
This could include joining a support group, seeking therapy or counselling, or continuing to prioritise activities that promote relaxation and self-care. Remember that mental health is an ongoing journey, and it’s okay to need help along the way.