As May is Mental Health Month, it's time to see if people actually take off days for mental health.
In fact, in a new survey by Breeze of 1,500 employees conducted on May 13, 2002, 63% of employees said they took a mental health day at some point last year.
Broken down by ages, 68% of those 35-44 took the day off and 47% of those over 54 did.
Taking time off positively impacted their job performance said 78% of survey respondents, but they are a bit shy about telling their employers that the day off was for mental health. While 56% did give their employers the real reason for the day off, 44% told a white lie to their employer about why they needed the day off (i.e. sudden illness, doctor's appointment).
Why lie? Well, 61% thought if their employer knew the real reason either they wouldn’t let them take the day or they might react negatively.
Other reasons for not asking for a day off were:
- I have too much work to be able to take a mental health day
- I think the rise of remote/hybrid work makes it tough to justify taking a mental health day
- I'm worried about my job security and/or what my employer thinks of my performance so I don't take a day off work unless absolutely necessary.
To learn more about mental health read EHS Today's 2021 Mental Health in the Workplace Report. This survey helps companies benchmark their current health programs.