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What to do if You are too Unwell to Work

Being too unwell to work is a situation that each and every individual is likely to find themselves in at least once in life. It’s also a situation that some people find themselves in more than others, due to differences in immune systems and the stability of one’s mental health. There’s no shame in declaring yourself unfit to work.

Indeed, there’s pride to be found in the strength of this decision. But you’ll need to ensure you’re dealing with this situation in the right way, as the following guide outlines.


Your first option, should you feel like you can’t go to your workplace but you’re equally keen not to abandon work altogether, is to compromise. Suggest to your manager that you work from home on a strictly temporary basis while you recover from your illness. This can often be an amenable middle-ground that ensures your workplace doesn’t lose a valued member of staff, but that you’re able to take naps, medicine and other breaks when you want to ensure your full recovery. It goes without saying that this option is only available to those who are able to work remotely.

Be Forceful and Uncompromising

The more severe your illness, the more uncompromising you need to be. By stating to your manager that there is no way you’ll be able to make it in for a week, you’ll be doing them a favor by declaratively telling them what human resources they can expect to turn up to work each day. If possible, get a doctor’s note to back up your statement, which will void any arguments from your workplace that you’re taking unnecessary time off. The more forceful you are, the more you’ll be able to relax in the knowledge that your workplace is aware of the severity of your situation.

Subsequent Discrimination

People who are frequently so ill as to have to miss work might feel that when they return they’re discriminated against in some way. In the long-run, this can even lead to unfair dismissal because your workplace wrongly believes you’ve been taking liberties with your time off. You should immediately contact an employment law specialist, in the event of you feeling discriminated against in the workplace. They’ll help explain your rights to you and may even issue a legal challenge against your employer on your behalf.

Honest Communication

This tip is especially important for those whose reason for missing work is a mental rather than a physical health issue. For many who ask for time off work, this is precisely the case. Schedule a meeting with a manager that you trust and who knows you well, and be honest about your predicament. This doesn’t mean spilling your guts; it just means allowing yourself to be a little vulnerable before your manager in order to show the severity of your situation and in order to receive the appropriate level of sensitivity around your particular case.

Being too unwell to work happens to us all, but it’s how we deal with it each time it happens that can change the reception of our time off. Bear these tips in mind to ensure you’re treated fairly, and you’re understood when you take time off work due to illness.

Originally posted 2018-10-31 21:19:04. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

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