Monday, August 24, 2009

Health Day

So, today I took a "health day" not a "sick" day, but a health day. In other words, I took a day off before I got sick, hopefully to prevent said sickness. Working a job by myself which is supposed to have to people has been wearing on me, and so a couple weeks ago I decided I would plan a day to call in sick. Then after last weeks craziness it became even more necessary. The beauty of planning a sick day, is you can plan to have no appointments that day. That way it doesn't screw up things for your clients or your team members and there's no catch up when you get back.

So what did I do for said "health day"? Well it wasn't maybe the most relaxing day ever or anything, but I did get some things accomplished that needed doing, which make me feel like my life is more under control. I got the oil changed on my car, got groceries, did laundry, washed dishes, had a nap (wonderfulness), saw best friend, snuggled with the cats and read an entire book. It was great. Now I'm just hoping I can sleep tonight despite the napping.

I wish workplaces could me more accepting of the need for such "health days". My supervisor was awesome about it. I actually told her what I was doing, so she knew ahead of time we'd be down staff. She's always saying we don't do enough self care, so it seemed like a safe bet she'd be okay with it. At my old job however, at the shelter, I wouldn't have dreamed of doing this. They were a lot stricter about needing doctor's notes and such. Then again, it's a lot easier for my program to run with less staff then it is for the shelter.

So, what's your workplace policy on taking a mental health day or a personal day. Is it an unofficial policy? Or is it totally frowned upon when employees take time off when they're not physically sick to the point of being completely unable to work?


cb said...

We have fairly generous holiday allowances. I get 30 days off a year not including public holidays (25 + 5 statutory meant to be taken over christmas/new year but as I work over that period I can take them anytime). I try to arrange time off regularly because it's important just to keep things ticking over. As for sick days - we can self-certify (no doctor's note required) up to five days (in effect a week).
I think preventative days are vital especially as the job can be very stressful.

Anonymous said...

so glad you feel refreshed what a briliant idea. not sure i would get away with it here we would have to take a day of our anuual leave.
take care

Anonymous said...

I take these days off quite regularly. They're called 'annual leave'. As part of your contract of employment you're entitled to them. If you take days off to do thinks like get your car sorted, you're cheating your employer.

Bethany said...

We get 5.86 hours of prepaid time off every two weeks (goes up when you've been there 3 years and up again at... either 5 or 7, at the maximum you get almost 10 hours every two weeks). My work is all about taking time off, not coming in if you're sick. We have leave of absence options for major surgery or whatever, you get 2 paid days for an immediate family member dying. And if you need time off in other circumstances, they work with you a lot (like when certain friends are coming in from Canada...). So yeah. My work is pretty amazing when it comes to time off. And, of course, it's not as direct an impact when someone in my position doesn't come in as it would be at a different type of job.

SocialWkr24/7 said...

My last job had a horrible time off policy - only 10 vacation and 8 sick all year. And they often times denied requests for vacation time, so people would just call in sick. After 2 days though, you needed a doctors note. Yes, it was a big reason that I left that place!

My current job has 26 vacation days and a complicated sick day "bank" that you can draw from. But they are super reasonable and encourage vacation time to be used up every year! I agree - we need time to recoup!