Mental Health Days

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SHRM quotes a study that finds family issues are the top reasons for ‘mental health’ days.

According to the article, thirty percent of those surveyed cited family or relationship issues as the reason they would take a mental health day. That was followed by work stress or workload at twenty percent.

I think mental health days are an old-world, baby boomer concept. If you work for a clock-watcher (like my former boss who counted the number of hours I worked on a weekly basis even though I was an exempt employee), you take a ‘mental health’ day when life is rough; however, if you work for a progressive manager who assigns projects and expects ownership of your duties, you simply work from home or take a day off.

  • When you’re part of the modern workforce, a ‘mental health’ day is like every other day — it’s managed privately, without notice to the entire team, and is no big thang.

Unfortunately, I’ve worked for my fair share of micro-managers and obsessive-compulsive supervisors. There is no time for a ‘mental health’ day in that world. It’s bad enough that I have to manage up to these people who consider themselves leaders in the field of Human Resources — but I’ve had to simultaneously coach far too many clients who position themselves squarely up the asses of their employees.

It’s no fun to deal with that kind of nonsense, and the thought of simply admitting that I need a ‘mental health’ day makes me want to check out of Corporate America entirely.

If I wanted to answer to someone about how I’m feeling and why I don’t feel like going to work, I’d quit my job and live at home with my parents.

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