How to talk to your supervisor about taking some mental health days off

How to talk to your supervisor about taking some mental health days off

Pay attention to what’s stopping you.

Worries that your supervisor will think you are not dedicated to your project if you take time off? Think about all the times you have shown dedication, including successful results, helping someone, presenting at a conference, etc. Remind yourself that your fears are not 100% true.

Write down why you need a break.

Think about the impact it has on your mental health, your work, and your group. Then, use this list to speak to your boss about why it’s important you take a break. Some examples are: Feeling overworked, need to fix sleep cycle, want to stop working at odd hours.

Make a clear plan.

Before you talk to your supervisor, ask yourself, “How long do I need to be away, what work needs to be done, and who can cover for me?”

Show positive intent.

Be honest with your supervisor about why you need time off. Show them how this will not just help you but also the overall productivity of the group. Be open to feedback or suggestions from your supervisor on your plan – maybe they have a better strategy to delegate tasks or reprioritise your tasks.