By | Harry Conley
Everyone suffers from varying levels of stress at some point. In the case of those who suffer from anxiety or depression, these symptoms can be even harder to manage. By recognizing that you are in need of a break and taking the time off to pause and regroup, you are giving yourself the best chance to come back to work with greater energy and focus.
A Mental Health Day Off
For most people, taking a day off work is something they only do when they are suffering from a physical illness or a minor ailment. Whilst sick days are commonplace, a mental health day off is nowhere near as common.
A mental health day off is designed for days when stress, anxiety, pressure or other mental health issues are affecting an employee’s ability to work efficiently and productively. Whilst one day might not solve major underlying problems which can cause burnout, they can offer a much-needed opportunity to pause and recharge.
When To Take A Day Off
Your body and thoughts may have already been giving you some cues. Perhaps you have felt frustrated by small things, started doing work at home, noticed that there is poor work-life balance or been feeling down, tired and neglecting yourself. Or perhaps you wake up one morning, simply unable to face the stress of a work day.
If you can, you might want to try to schedule a day off ahead of time. This will allow you to rearrange your workload and help ensure that you don’t feel stressed about taking the day off.
What are the benefits of a Mental Health Day Off?
Taking a mental health day off can have a significantly positive impact on your overall wellbeing and on your productivity at work.
Firstly, it will reduce stress levels and provide you with the chance to relax. You will find that you will be able to return to work with a more positive mindset and reinvigorated to work.
It will provide you with an opportunity to get some rest and to reset your perspective. Take some time to step back and evaluate your situation. Examine the factors that are causing you stress and anxiety and how you can resolve them.
A day off will also help you to get a handle on your emotions and help you to gain a better work-life balance. “Employees who take regular mental health days off have shown improved stress management and mental acuity,” says Chadwick Liss, a health specialist at Last Minute Writing and Researchpapersuk. “Most of all, they benefit from a boost in productivity upon returning to work.”
How to Best Use/Spend Your Day off
“Avoid spending all day at home doing chores or binge-watching TV. Spending your mental health day off overeating unhealthy foods and wallowing in negative thoughts and emotions is also extremely unhelpful, as is spending your day on social media,” says Terry Cunningham, a psychologist at DraftBeyond and Writinity. “Instead, find an activity that you find relaxing. It could be anything – taking a walk, doing some yoga, visiting a museum or spending some time reading. Whatever you choose, make sure you spend your day doing something you enjoy and that will boost your mental wellness.”
Plan your day off so that you get the most out of it. Some ideas include:
- Going for a walk in nature – spending some time outdoors can greatly help to boost your mood and creativity, as well as give you time to focus on the bigger picture.
- Find a hobby – perhaps you have a hobby you’ve neglected or one you’ve been meaning to take up? Spend the day doing it.
- Spend some time on you – create a plan for yourself and stick to it, including planning some time each week to rest and unwind.
- Rest, relax and recharge – you could have a massage or spend the day reading.
Being kind to yourself and realizing that you need a day off to refresh can be one of the best tools for improving your overall wellness and for boosting your productivity. A mental health day off will help you to feel more valuable when you return to work. Strive to improve your mental wellbeing each day and take the day off when you need it.