If you follow me on Social Media, you will know that this week I’ve been quite ill… and I do apologise for the amount that you had to hear about it, and I promise, I will eventually stop harping on about the fact that I have a cold. BUT, it did open my eyes to something really interesting that has made me think.
I started feeling a bit under the weather last weekend, even cancelling plans to stay in on Saturday night and rest up. I felt a bit better on Sunday and went to dinner at my friend’s house and didn’t think twice that I might not be over whatever was niggling at my immune system. Come Monday evening though and I was feeling tired, restless and had a sore throat which definitely meant I was coming down with a bout of something.
Now, because I work from home, I always feel as though I have to prove myself that little bit more as my line manager is not there to ‘see’ me every day like in a normal office situation, so when I was asked on Tuesday whether I would definitely be going down to London for a day of meetings, I felt immediately guilty and said that I would be there… What a mistake.
I woke up on Wednesday at 5:45am and felt dreadful, but not only had I booked a train to go down there – and a bloody expensive one thanks to the shoddy peak system we have in the UK – I felt bad that I might be letting people down who had also gone to London to meet me if I didn’t go. The day was awful and I could barely muster the strength to have a cup of tea, let alone a conversation. When I got home, I collapsed on the bed and tried to sleep.
The next day I took to Instagram to talk about how our generation feels guilty about having a sick day, and it seemed as though I wasn’t alone. I was inundated with messages stating that some people too felt guilty about taking a sick day and how anxious you feel about not being on emails all the time.
Even on Thursday when I was probably at my worst, I spent the morning looking through my inbox from bed before my body just gave up and I had to close my laptop, which made me feel awful.
We are now working in a generation where we are programmed to go to work even when we are not feeling well, and it’s ridiculous; Not only does this make us feel worse, but we also run the risk of making everyone else ill that comes into contact with us and our health and getting better should be our number 1 priority.
Next time you feel guilty about having a sick day, DON’T – you are 100% entitled to not be healthy all of the time and need to put yourself first. You are only human.