8 Subtle Signs You Need To Take A Mental Health Day, Right Now!
Do you take a break from work when you feel under the weather? Yes, right? But, do you take a day off when you feel exhausted (and I don’t mean physically)? Probably not, right? Knowing when our body needs a day off is easy but understanding the signs you need a mental break is also important for our wellbeing.
What exactly is a mental health day, though?
Recently, I read in a news article that Simone Biles, an American athlete withdrew from the Tokyo Olympics 2020 to focus on her mental wellbeing and health. This got me thinking. When we are all too eager to take a break from work when we are sick, why do we hesitate to take a break or a day off when we feel too mentally and emotionally.. off?
Of course, this all can be because we don’t exactly know when our body and mind need a mental health break. Below are some subtle signs you need to take a mental health day.
If you relate to any of the signs below, you should consider taking a mental health break or a mental health day to unwind, relax, and reboot.
8 Signs You Need A Mental Health Day
1. You’re Too Exhausted, All The Time
One of the first signs you need to go for mental health day is physical and emotional exhaustion. When our body is exhausted, it can lead to two situations; one is getting too much sleep and the other is not getting enough sleep. Sleep and mental health are related, don’t forget.
On average, a person needs 6-8 hours of uninterrupted sleep but when we are too emotionally drained and continuously face high levels of stress, we can develop sleep issues such as insomnia. You can try taking a day off and sleep in. Getting enough sleep can help reboot your mind as well as your body.
2. You’re Too Testy These Days
Getting angry or overreacting to small things can also be a sign you need a mental health day. When we are too stressed, overwhelmed, or anxious, we might overreact and snap at our loved ones without meaning to. Getting testy over minor inconveniences and snapping at others – at work and home – is not going to help.
If you find yourself getting angry with minor inconveniences, you might want to take a step back and focus on nurturing your mental health. On your mental day off, do something that takes the edge and pent-up energy off. For example, physical exercises, massage therapy, etc.
3. You’re Anxious Than Usual
Too many thoughts in your head? Feeling uneasy all the time? It can be a sign of impending anxiety. And too much anxiety can be a sign of you needing a mental break. When anxiety shows up, it can disguise itself in the form of racing thoughts, shortness of breath, physical discomfort, or just general uneasiness during your day.
Try to spend time with your loved ones, go for a relaxing massage, try yoga, breathing exercises, or other relaxing exercises to help you release anxiety and return your mood to normal.
4. You’re Unable To Focus On Daily Tasks
When focusing becomes a struggle, it’s a sign you need a mental break. Too much work at home and work when you can’t keep track of everything can lead you to make mistakes and experience stress you don’t need. All of us need some time away from our stressful lives to breathe and regroup.
Focusing on caring for your emotional being and mental wellness can help you increase productivity, performance, improve concentration, and much more! You can try practicing mindfulness meditation to improve your focus.
5. You’ve Been Sick A Lot
Physical health is also related to our mental health, never forget. Our immune system reacts to our stressors. If you can’t seem to shake off your physical illness (even after being given a clean bill of health), you might want to take this as a sign you need a mental health day.
Recurring or continuous physical illness can mean that you have too much stress in your life and you need to tone it down. If not kept in check, your physical illness can worsen and so can your mental health.
Just as you would consult a physician for help, there is no shame in asking a mental health professional for help.
6. You Feel Sluggish
Some people believe that a cup of coffee or a boost of caffeine can make them lose sluggishness. However, if you’re not able to shake off the sluggishness with caffeinated beverages, it can be a sign you need a mental break. Bear in mind that drinking caffeine can make you feel more tired if your mental health is left unchecked.
Consuming too much caffeine can also make you dehydrate. Make sure you drink lots of water and stay hydrated during the day. Just a day of eating a well-nourished diet and lots of water can go a long way to decrease sluggishness.
7. You Feel Detached From The World
Because of WFH, many of us spend half of our week staring at a computer screen. When work becomes a priority and when we can’t keep a healthy work-life balance, it can make us feel detached and disconnected from the world (or the world around us).
When you find yourself withdrawing from people you love, it is an alarm you need a mental health day. Take a day off to reconnect with your loved ones, go have lunch with your friends, go for dinner with your partner. Do things to help you restore the connection you might’ve lost.
8. You Feel Down And Sad
It doesn’t matter if it’s personal issues or office drama but if you’re feeling down, frustrated, or sad – a lot more usual than normal, Then you need a mental health day. You can try watching a funny movie, reading a book, engaging in a hobby, or anything that lifts your spirits.
If you still feel down after a few weeks, you might be struggling with something serious other than just a low mood. Intense sadness, irritability, loss of interest in previously pleasurable activities can be early symptoms of depression.
If the above activities aren’t helpful, you can try and reach out to a mental health professional here.
Your attempts to restore your mental health will not work if you don’t take this wholeheartedly. If you’ve taken a day off to work on your mental health, then really work on getting better. Unplug and unwind for a day, relax.
If your mental space is not healthy, how can you expect your physical space to be healthy? If you’d like to know what to do on a mental health day, you can refer to this blog below.
Also Read: How To Spend Your ‘Mental Health Day Off’
I hope these above signs you need a mental health day helped you understand if you need one or not. You can also write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org to know more about mental wellness or follow us on social media.
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Taking care of your mental health is in your hands. Be kind to yourself and take care!