Why do we wait until we are sick to take a day off?

Research has shown that one in three Americans actually looks forward to being sick. Yes, you read that right. People have cited looking forward to taking a break from their daily routine and responsibilities. But what makes us wait until we are actually sick to do the things we like, like lay in bed, catch up on sleep and watch TV?

  1. Job Security – What makes us think that one day away from the office will jeopardize our jobs?
  2. Saving it for a Sunny Day – Most of us have limited time off, and want to make the most of it, so we don’t consider it a valid reason to take a day off to just relax.
  3. Where’s the Glamour? – Why take a perfectly healthy day and stay in bed?
  4. The Need to Prove Ourselves – Most of us are on hyper overdrive in our lives. Multi-tasking, device-dependent, FOMO obsessed. 5. Guilt – There are so many people who are genuinely sick that we tend to feel like we are slacking off if we are simply relaxing.

Maybe we are looking at this all wrong. It’s not simply showing up at work that makes you a valuable employee and it certainly doesn’t mean you work harder. A recent study in Japan showed that shortening the workweek to 4 days from 5 actually resulted in an increase in productivity.

Taking a mental health day, relaxing and taking things down a notch when you are well might actually prevent you from getting sick in the first place. Stress and fatigue reduces the body’s ability to fight off illness.
Pick a day, circle it on your calendar and plan to do nothing. It might help you more than you think.

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

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