Mental Health Day for Stress Relief: How to Tell Your Boss You Need a Day Off! by Stephanie Hernandez
It doesn't matter what kind of job you have. You could be a doctor, teacher, IT tech, cashier or even work from home. You will always need a mental health day. Doing work day after day is mentally taxing on you and it's important to take a day to reset yourself – and I'm not talking about the weekend. I'm talking about taking a mental health day.
Stress is one of the main causes of most of our illnesses. It's the silent killer. We need to focus on reducing our stress, and this means allowing ourselves the chance to rest. The issue is, it's nerve-wracking to talk to your boss about it. Here are three tips on how to tell your boss you need a mental health day:
- Set up a meeting. This is not a topic you should quickly bring up when you walk by their office and they're in the middle of something else. This needs their undivided attention to actually listen to you and understand why you need it. Schedule a meeting with your boss so that you can sit down and talk to them about your situation and why you need it. Being able to discuss something like this with them will show them you trust them, respect them and they'll be impressed with your honesty and openness.
- Plan in advance. This isn't always something you can do if you suddenly feel burnt out or anxious, but you're more likely to feel less guilty about taking a day off if you schedule it ahead of time. This gives you the opportunity to plan your work ahead of time, answer any emails and reschedule any meetings for that day. This keeps the day going and you'll actually enjoy your day off instead of thinking about all the things you have to do or didn't do.
- Just ask for a personal day. You don't have to explain yourself to anyone. You are given an allotted number of days off and you should be allowed to do with them what you please. Obviously (and unfortunately) this is not always the case, but you can simply just request a personal day. No explanation needed.
I do believe it's so important to talk about mental health. However, there is such a stigma in the professional world about mental health and taking days off. It's important for employees, supervisors, CEOs and everyone in between to talk about it. Mental health issues are incredibly common and the more we talk about it, the less guilty and fearful you will feel whenever you want to take a simple mental health day off.
Most of the time, you're your own worst enemy. We're the ones who convince ourselves our boss won't let us or they'll fire us immediately. We feel anxious when we receive an email from them saying, "Can you come in my office for a minute?" while we get ready to start packing our things. Don't let your anxieties and fears take over and prevent you from taking care of your health! You need a day off, trust me. So take it and enjoy it.