When Should You Be Taking A Mental Health Break?

People won’t hesitate to take a break when their physical health is bad but are reluctant to treat their mental health equally.

Your mental health plays a massive role in your ability to work and maintain a positive lifestyle, so taking some time off to focus on your mental health isn’t something you should feel guilty about or ashamed of.

When considering taking mental health days off, make sure you know the distinction between wanting a day off and genuinely looking after yourself. Some signs to look out for that may mean you need a mental health break can include:

  •       Moods: constantly feeling angry, irritated, tearful, depressed or anxious.
  •       Behaviour: actively disconnecting from others, lashing out at people easily, decreasing work performance, not being as motivated, making more simple mistakes or accidents.
  •       Thoughts: having pessimistic and negative thoughts, feeling disillusioned, resentful or discontent.
  •       Physical: being constantly tired, body tension issues, adult acne, constant colds, headaches and migraines, sleeplessness, difficulty focusing, significant weight loss or weight gain.

Everyone has their own way of caring for their mental health, but if you’re unsure where to start, consider the following tips.

Do Emotional Work

Consider the reasons why your mental health has been low. Ask yourself what you can do about things that make you feel bad instead of putting the blame on external factors. Engage in some problem-solving or reframing situations more positively and realistically. Consider if going to therapy, talking to someone you trust, or taking an extended break will benefit you.


Try to spend some time reconnecting with your friends and family. Human connections and socialising are linked to mental well-being and can help avoid social anxiety and loneliness.

Do Activities You Enjoy

Working full-time or having other commitments can mean that your hobbies are deprioritised. You can spend some time in your break going back to activities you like, whether painting, reading, music or watching movies. This can help you relax and enjoy yourself.