“I think the safe advice is not to be upfront,” said Andrew Kuller, a clinical psychologist at McLean Hospital in Belmont, Massachusetts. Not everyone values ​​mental health, he added, and “unless you are close to your manager.” a risk.”

But say you work in an organization where you can tell the truth without facing punishment. In this case, you are still not obliged to state why you want to call in sick. However, if you have something to share (or are interested in reducing the stigma surrounding mental health), you could reach out to your manager and say, “I think I would really benefit from taking a day to help out. to relax a little, “said Dr. said Grant. “I want to get back to work with all my energy.”

When employees are mentally and physically exhausted, it affects the quality of their work, their productivity, and the people around them, added Dr. Grant added.

“I think it’s easier to have a conversation about burnout than about sadness, depression or anxiety, so I would probably play it safe there and highlight why this is good for the organization, not just you,” said he

If you feel ready, you can also try putting together a coalition of people in your department who are concerned about mental exhaustion, said Dr. Grant, whose latest book “Think Again: The Power of Knowing What You Don’t Know,” challenges readers to change long-cherished thought patterns. As a group, you can discuss concerns such as missed deadlines or mistakes that could be made worse by burnout, and then bring these issues to your manager, who may be motivated to find a solution. That way, you can try and change the system for everyone, including yourself.

When deciding how to use a mental health day, it helps to think about what got you there in the first place. Do your personal relationships need attention? Are you exhausted from your workload and want to switch off from it all? Did you have a particularly stressful week and want to spend some time decompressing? Maybe it’s a combination of several things.

Thinking about it ahead of time will help you make the most of your day as possible. While one person is benefiting from a massage or a pampering day, another person may want to paint or garden. Others will find the greatest value in reconnecting with friends or family members.