Navigating Mental Health in Real Estate

How do we recognize the signs of mental illness, within ourselves or in our peers? And how can we support our colleagues, friends or loved ones if they’re struggling?

On Episode 26 of REAL TIME, Dr. Raj Bhatla and Ron Antalek join us in support of the Canadian Mental Health Association’s (CMHA) Mental Health Week 2022. In a demanding profession like real estate, taking the time to talk mental health is essential to fostering a vibrant, thriving industry both today and tomorrow.

Dr. Bhatla is Psychiatrist-in-Chief and Chief of Staff of the Royal Ottawa Health Care Group. He did his undergraduate work at Harvard University and his medical degree at McGill University. He joined The Royal, one of Canada’s foremost mental health care, teaching, and research hospitals, in 1992.

Antalek is a second-generation REALTOR® with more than 30 years’ experience. He’s also a philanthropist, committed volunteer, and mental health advocate in his community of Maple Ridge, British Columbia. In 2020, he was the recipient of the Canadian REALTORS Care® Award.

Aligning with the CMHA’s theme of empathy, we explore various topics surrounding mental health, including awareness, de-stigmatization, and how to support one another through compassion and understanding.

Discussions around mental health have become more common in recent years, and as Antalek mentions, this conversation wouldn’t have happened 10 years ago.

While the stigma surrounding mental health has evolved, Dr. Bhatla discusses some of the most common challenges he sees today. He also talks about what mental health issues he sees in the workplace and what professions are more vulnerable than others.

As a REALTOR®, Antalek is familiar with the pressures of working in real estate, such as unpredictable hours and dealing with the expectations of clients. He shares how he finds a healthy work-life balance in such a competitive, emotionally driven industry.

In turn, Dr. Bhatla provides some basic tips for managing work-related stress/anxiety to help avoid burnout. Plus, we hear how to recognize the signs in others and how you can support your peers who may be experiencing mental health challenges.

More from CREA Café:

Antalek also tells us how REALTORS® can support mental health initiatives in their own communities—plus, Dr. Bhatla explains how volunteering can have benefits to one’s own mental health.

Want to see more mental health topics on CREA Café? Tell us what topics you’re interested in reading about in the Comments below.

Sarah Doktor brings her experience as a small-town journalist and national online editor to the Canadian Real Estate Association as a Communications Advisor. Sarah helps facilitate conversations between CREA and our members, boards, associations and the public via our online communities. She also helps coordinate the content presented to you here on the CREA Café. In her spare time, Sarah can be found at the gym, running on a trail or watching Netflix with her cat, Libby.

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