Often times, we understand when someone needs to take a sick day from work or school. By sick, I mean physically sick. However, it is often considered unacceptable for someone to not go to school or work because they are mentally or emotionally struggling. Mental health days are not as valued as physical sick days. However, mental health days are essential and everyone needs one from time to time.
As a college student, I am always on the go. If I do not have an exam to study for then I have a paper to write. The college lifestyle can take a toll on your mental health with all the stress and no rest. This is what started to happen to me last week as the end of the semester is approaching and I have been working hard non-stop since August. Last week, I started to feel burnt out. My thinking was shattered all over the place. My appetite was thrown off. I could get a full eight hours of sleep and I would still be overwhelming tired throughout the day. I really wanted to skip my classes for a day in order to take a mental health day; however, I was afraid to do so because my professors would not count a mental health day as a valid excuse to skip their classes. However, I had to put my mental health first. My emotions and mental state are important to me; therefore, I decided to take a mental health day and skip my classes.
On this day, I did all of my favorite things. I slept in, made myself breakfast, went outside and took amazing pictures with my Polaroid camera, and I went out to dinner and to the movies with my best friends. I could not have asked for a more relaxing day. When I went to my classes the following day I felt refreshed and ready to learn. I needed my mental health day and I don’t regret taking one. As extremely busy people in a extremely busy society, we should not be on edge with the thought of taking a day for ourselves. Mental health days do not make you lazy,but rather responsible because you are taking care of your mental health. Take a mental health day if you need one!
To learn more about when to take a mental health day, read the following article from Psychology Today. Also, the subject of mental health days went viral with Madalyn Parker’s story. Read her story here.
Have you ever taken a mental health day? Or were you too afraid and felt stigmatized? How did people reaction? We would love to hear your experiences in the comment section below!