How your employer should respond when you take a leave to focus on your mental health

Often we dedicate our lives to our work, to our passion. But sometimes when we work to the core and give it all we’ve got, we burn ourselves out.

Maybe it could be personal problems we’ve been facing. Whether a break up, or a financial crisis, or your dog passing away — there are things which we just can’t control, which is why we need to take a break every once in a while to focus on our well-being.

Madalyn Parker, a web developer, broke the mental health stigma with one email to her co-workers saying she was taking two days off to “focus on my mental health,” and her CEO gave the best response.

CEO Ben Congleton told Madalyn he wanted to thank her personally for “sending emails like this.”

Every time you do, I use it as a reminder of the importance of using sick days for mental health — I can’t believe this is not standard practice at all organizations.

You are an example to us all, and help cut through the stigma so we can all bring our whole selves to work.

Some questioned Parker on her use of the sick leave, proposing that the company should just make it a one-leave policy.

“I wasn’t expecting the exposure, but I am so glad I was able to have such a positive impact on so many people,” Congleton wrote on July 6.

“There were so many stories of people wishing they worked at a place where their CEO cared about their health, and so many people congratulating me on doing such a good thing,” he continued.

“It’s 2017. I cannot believe that it is still controversial to speak about mental health in the workplace when 1 in 6 americans are medicated for mental health.”

Props to this employer! 

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