Work Work Work Work Work Work……Many of us feel guilty about taking off of work, or taking half days. I get it. That was me 100%. I took my first mental health day a few years ago, and I never looked back. It was more simple than you would think. All I did was tell my boss I needed a mental health day due to the stress of my job. Being in the behavioral health field, she understood, and it was literally that ONE decision that set off the way I handle employment now. Lots of places of employment set the precedent that you should be so loyal to them, and your time should be spent making them money. This is true in a sense. Yes, you are paid to perform. Yes, because you made a commitment, it’s good to honor it. However, what about loyalty to yourself. Often times, we give so much to our jobs and careers that we don’t take the time to pour into ourselves regular. We have intentions on resting on the weekends, but sometimes we end up filling those times up with housework, going to parties/events, and getting ready for the next work week! Taking a Mental Health Day every now and again can help us not only take a breather and unplug from the daily hustle and bustle of work, but can also help you focus, relax and rejuvenate!
There are PLENTY of reasons to take a Mental Health Day, but it may require a shift in mindset. Even if you don’t consider your job very stressful or demanding, we can all use a day to ourselves! During a Mental Health Day, we can do so many things that you can’t normally do during regular business hours. Also, if you don’t work regular business hours, a Mental Health Day is a good time to get some well needed rest! Mental Health Days prevent burnout, and allow you to engage in your life more fully.
A few ways to tell that you are in NEED of an MHD (I just made that up, ha-ha)
You Feel Overworked
You are easily agitated at work
You experience fatigue or always tired
Work continues to bleed into other areas of your life
You are showing physical signs of stress
You are missing out on family, friends, etc. due to career
Co-workers irritate you consistently.
If you answered maybe to at least one of these, consider scheduling a Mental Health Day for yourself. Review your place of employments call off/PTO policy... and LIVE YOUR BEST LIFE! The objective is to pause, reset, rejuvenate, organize, or in whatever way makes you feel calm, collected and rested. It is important that your Mental Health Day is actually rejuvenating. If you need some ideas, check out this infographic I created for Grounded Wellness.
Shift your mindset to self-care, and see how effective a Mental Health Day can be!
Arielle Smith is a Clinical Psychotherapist at Grounded Wellness LLC and a self-care advocate. For more information on Arielle's counseling services, please visit her profile at Grounded Wellness.
Arielle was fortunate enough to have a boss who understood the value of a Mental Health Day. If you are not so fortunate, check out our workbook, "How to Build More Self-Care into Your Day." The strategy in that workbook will help you even if your environment does not support your self-care.