Signs You Need To Take A Mental Health Day

It's true we are living in a time of immense stress — and that it's hard to maintain any peace of mind while balancing it all. That's why it's so important, now more than ever, to take a mental health day. Your family, coworkers, and friends will thank you for it. In a world that asks so much from us, it may be hard to take a day to say "no" rather than "yes," but your physical and mental health will benefit from it. 

Here are some ways to know that you need to take a break. Questions like, "How am I feeling today?" or "Do I feel the need to take a break?" can help you determine your stress status, per The Zoe Report. However, for many, the side effects of being over-stressed are intense enough for us to realize a break is needed all on our own. Here are some indicators that you're overdue for a mental break.

How is your focus?

Because it can be hard to juggle all of the responsibilities you have in a day, your focus could be lacking. If you're feeling like you're in a mental fog or like you can't make decisions as easily as before, both could be signs that you need a break. The Zoe Report explains that not focusing at work can account for careless errors and overlooking important tasks. When things get wild like this, your mind could just need a day with fewer responsibilities and more relaxation.

How is your overall mood?

When deciding whether or not it's time for a mental health day, it's important to take note of how you're feeling. Total Wellness Health notes that if you're feeling anxious, depressed, or reluctant to go to work, it might be time for a break. Any negative, abnormal feelings will cause unneeded stress in your working environment, and more stress is the last thing you need. If your mood is off, it might be time for a day off.

Are you more anxious than usual?

Sometimes anxiety comes in other forms besides mental fog. If you're feeling irritable, are sick to your stomach when you think of work, or have an increased heart rate, it may be time to call in for the day. According to Total Health Wellness, physical manifestations like this often mean you are physically and mentally burnt out. Our bodies warn us of fatigue with signs such as these, and a break can help you physically as well as mentally.

Isolation from others

When we are overworked and stressed, our exhaustion can appear in many forms. One could be feeling disconnected from our coworkers and friends. Connecting with friends in our social circle is key to feeling heard and understood. When we feel this disconnect, Women's Health recommends taking time to revisit with old friends. Doing so can be an instant mood elevator. On your mental health day, consider reaching out to someone who you haven't spoken to in a while. This pause in your work life could be a great time to reignite your social circle. 

How to spend your day

Once you make the decision to take a mental health day for yourself, don't waste it checking emails or messaging clients. In addition, Total Health Wellness warns against activities like over-indulging in food or alcohol or avoiding family and friends.

Instead, give yourself permission to reset, refocus, and pamper yourself. Setting aside time for rest, a pedicure, or a Netflix movie could be just the remedy for an overworked body and mind (via Women's Health). After resting, run the errands you haven't had time for and prepare for the rest of the work week. Things like preparing meals ahead of time, setting out your work clothes for the week, and writing down your workouts on the calendar can lessen the stress of the rest of the week.