You wake up Wednesday morning and your head is killing you, your nose is running, and you have a fever. What do you do? Odds are you said, “call out sick from work.”
But what if you woke up feeling sluggish, drained, unhappy, and anxious? Would you still call out? Odds are, you answered, “no.”
Unfortunately, mental health isn’t made as much of a priority as physical health is today — that’s not to say that we haven’t made major strides as a nation in recent years. But the idea of taking a “mental health day” is still not widely accepted or appreciated by many people.
What is a Mental Health Day
Let’s start with what a mental health day isn’t. This isn’t a free day for you to spend laying in bed, going out to bars, or eating unhealthy food. A mental health day should be a day of recovery, improvement, and purpose. While relaxation might be a part of your recovery, you shouldn’t spend all day on the couch binging movies.
Signs You Need a Mental Health Day
Though we often compare mental health to physical health, understanding signs of mental or emotional distress are not as easy as symptoms of a physical illness. So how are you supposed to know when it’s time for a mental health day? You should take a mental health day if you:
- Are more anxious than usual.
- Haven’t been able to sleep for several days in a row.
- Feel “down in the dumps” for no obvious reason.
- Haven’t been able to focus while in school or at work.
- Are consistently sick.
How to Spend Your Mental Health Day
Congratulations! You made the positive choice to take a mental health day and work on yourself. But now that your day off has come, do you know how to appropriately spend it? We suggest:
- Sleeping in a little later than you usually do.
- Reading a book.
- Taking an exercise class or going to the gym.
- Outlining your life goals and seeing if your current life aligns with these goals.
- Speaking with a therapist.
Debra Solomon, founder of Spectrum Strategies has many services waiting for you. From time management and productivity workshops to individual coaching, she is an expert in her field. Debra is focused on training young adults on the Autism Spectrum to accomplish life and career goals, no matter how big or small. Call (516) 510-7637 for your one on one and let’s get you reaching for the stars!