Sick days are for more than just the flu.
Exhausted? Emotionally drained? Overwhelmed? Feeling completely wiped after a long day at work? (I will say this until I’m blue in the face…) There’s nothing wrong with taking time to focus on your own mental well-being
Everyone has bad days now and then, but when you experience ongoing stress – it’s important to take some time away to bring yourself back to center. Workplace burnout can have serious negative consequences on our bodies (manifesting in digestive issues and muscle pain) and minds (manifesting in sleep problems and the potential onset of depression and anxiety). One of the best ways to avoid this is by taking a mental health day.
What is a mental health day?
There is no official definition, but a mental health day generally refers to a day a person takes off from work when they’re feeling emotionally unwell. What’s best about a mental health day is that there is no criteria for what needs to happen in order to feel justified in taking one. (But some ways to tell if you are in need of a mental health day are if you’re having trouble focusing, are more anxious than usual, are exhausted but unable to sleep, keep getting sick or feel as though you’re in slow motion, disconnected and/or down in the dumps.)
If you can’t function emotionally the same way you couldn’t function if you had a fever, take a day off.
By taking a day off work when you need it, you’re prioritizing your mental well-being and allowing yourself time to recharge. Plus, studies have shown that when people take care of their mental health, they are more productive at work.
What should you do on a mental health day?
Anything that makes you feel better and more grounded, as a mental health day is a great way to rest and restore. Sleep in for a few extra hours, watch a funny movie, spend time with family, read a book, do a fun activity like a craft or hobby – anything that makes you feel good about yourself and allows for some mental rest.