Taking a Mental Health Day

Jade Augustine

It can be daunting to call into work when you’re sick, let alone when you need a day for yourself. However, sometimes doing this is necessary, not only for your well-being, but for your productivity as well.

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Photo by Mollie Sivaram on Unsplash

When you take a mental health day, you likely aren’t doing it for frivolous reasons. Chances are, things are going on in life that are stressing you out. This can be in your personal life, such as relationship problems or family drama that must be dealt with.

Yet, a common reason that people take mental health days from work involves work stress itself. If this is the case for you, you likely know that overworking yourself and consistently putting yourself in an environment that expects so much of you can be really damaging. You may not be able to quit your job right now, or you may not even want to quit your job at all.

Either way, the point still stands. Overworking leads to burnout, which reduces productivity.

By taking a day to refresh and recharge, you’ll be able to go to the office the next day as a more productive person. It’s a win-win for you and your employer, whether both parties realize it or not.

Asking For A Mental Health Day

It can be scary to ask for a mental health day, but you don’t have to be specific. You can tell your boss that you aren’t feeling great that day and you think it would be better if you took the day to rest. Your boss shouldn’t ask questions, and if they do, you can say that you are taking a sick day.

If you’d like to explain further, you can say that you’re feeling really stressed out and that taking a day off will really boost your productivity later. Your boss shouldn’t complain about a more productive employee, even if they are a little upset about you not coming into work that day.

How to Spend A Mental Health Day

You know yourself better than anyone. You can spend your mental health day doing whatever you believe is good for your mental health. You may need space from everyone and want a day entirely to yourself to sit around and watch Netflix, or you can catch up with some friends that have the day off and spend your time socializing.

Don’t let yourself wallow in guilt for not being at work. And don’t spend your day doing work from home when you know that’s not what you need to be doing right now.

The important thing is to make sure you don’t waste your day off doing things that aren’t satisfying to you.

If you do that, then you won’t truly be refreshed when you head back into the office.

What If The Mental Health Day Doesn’t Help?

There are cases where a day or two off of work is what you need to get right back into the groove of things, and that’s the primary focus of this article, but not all issues can be eased or solved with a day or two off of work.

It may be that your job is so stressful that it isn’t the right fit for you and that you’ll have to tough it out a little longer before you can find a job that better suits your needs. Or it might be that you need professional help in order to better manage your mental health.

Whatever it is that you need to do in order to take care of yourself, do it. Your mental health takes priority over your job no matter what.

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Jade Augustine is a writer from Fort Collins, Colorado. She is passionate about cats, dogs, entertainment, vegan food, and traveling.

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