Prince Harry says quitting work can bring 'joy' and boost your mental health

6 December 2021, 16:08

Harry said the world is at the 'beginning of the mental health awakening'
Harry said the world is at the 'beginning of the mental health awakening'. Picture: Getty

By Asher McShane

Prince Harry has said people who feel "stuck" in their jobs should think about quitting and that leaving jobs that make you unhappy should be "celebrated."

Nearly two years after abandoning life as a working royal, Harry spoke at a roundtable interview as chief impact officer for professional coaching and mental health firm BetterUp.

The Duke of Sussex also said job resignations accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic "aren't all bad."

Harry was asked about a workplace trend of increased burnout and job resignations spurred on by Covid which has been dubbed the "Great Resignation" by economists in the US.

Read more: Boris Johnson to decide on Christmas Covid restrictions within 10 days

He said: "I've actually discovered recently, courtesy of a chat with (BetterUp science board member) Adam Grant, that a lot of the job resignations you mention aren't all bad.

"In fact, it is a sign that with self-awareness comes the need for change.

"Many people around the world have been stuck in jobs that didn't bring them joy, and now they're putting their mental health and happiness first. This is something to be celebrated."

He added: "While on the surface it looks like these last couple of years brought all these issues to the foreground, the reality is these struggles and issues have been brewing for quite some time.

"We're just at the beginning of the mental health awakening."

San Francisco-based BetterUp is valued at 4.7 billion dollars and Harry's role, which he took on in March, includes product strategy, philanthropy, and public advocacy related to mental health.

He is also involved in the firm's commitment to Pledge 1% - a movement which encourages companies to donate 1% of equity, staff time, product or profit to their communities.

Harry said BetterUp envisioned a "world where growth and transformation are possible for everyone, and everyone has access to the support and care they need to thrive".

He added: "Being attuned with your mind, and having a support structure around you, are critical to finding your own version of peak performance, whether you're a global leader or an employee working nine to five."