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What to do when signed off with work related stress?

(21 Posts)
Chaosofcalm Sun 26-Nov-17 14:34:48

I have just been signed off with work related stress. What happens now? How do I will myntime over the next week? How long will I need before before I am ready to go back? Will I ever go back?

Basically, does anyone have a crystal ball and can tell me the future?

hevonbu Sun 26-Nov-17 19:39:20

I have a crystal ball and it says it'll take longer time to recover than you would wish, but you'll be back to your normal self much sooner than in your worst fear. Maybe you will take up gardening and pottering, since scientists from Essex and Westminster universities have found that a single session of pottering on an allotment often result in "an instant reduction in stress and fatigue, as well as a boost to self-esteem, vigour and a general feeling of good health." Since it's now winter it's a bad time for taking up pottering on an allotment but a good time for buying a few Christmas plants and perhaps a suitable lamp. Going for long walks in parks, and to get as much daylight as possible, will also be beneficial. Other than that, the crystal ball doesn't say a great deal, it's a very small ball, hard to see clearly when peering into it.... it's not like television... flowers

Vitalogy Sun 26-Nov-17 19:42:08

Walking, do lots of walking.

myidentitymycrisis Sun 26-Nov-17 23:23:59

I’m signed off too OP for two weeks. I’m feeling lots better and about to start week two. Too cold for gardening but I’ve been swimming a lot. Met up with friend for coffee, been to the library and read a novel. Hope you feel better soon.

Chaosofcalm Mon 27-Nov-17 08:18:09

Thank you for your future telling skills.

I think the hardest but is not knowing how long I will be off for if I am going back in two weeks then I need to start preparing work soon.

thereinmadnesslies Mon 27-Nov-17 08:24:00

I’m signed off with stress too. I think the hardest thing is not being able to plan. This is week 4, I have another week after this. I definitely feel better but not 100%, DH says there are little moments when I seem like old me not the stressed me.
Definitely agree with the suggestions of walking and exercise. Yoga helps. Trying to do some of the jobs at home which I was never round to due to the pressure of work. Just lying in bed for a few extra hours.
Are you seeing a counsellor or occupational health?

parrotonmyshoulder Mon 27-Nov-17 08:30:29

Are you a teacher?
It’s difficult because you’re probably signed off for two weeks at a time - that means you’re still thinking about the work you need to do when you go back. So you can’t relax and recover.
If you are a teacher, think about it as having all the rest of this term off (you’ll definitely get that - no doctor will be forcing you back). Forget all of it, no end of term assessments, performance reviews, data.

Then, IF you feel better, make a plan IN January (not before) to go back. Whatever you do, don’t make a decision about permanently leaving until you are better.

If you’re not a teacher, feel free to ignore - but the point about needing more than two weeks to get better still stands.

timeisnotaline Mon 27-Nov-17 08:33:49

Well, don't think about it at all for a week. Walking, tea/coffee, tv and duvet day if that's your thing, I like the idea of checking out the local library, bake a cake, anything which you enjoy doing but no big plans. One thing a day except for a walk every day, and a reasonable bedtime.

Chaosofcalm Mon 27-Nov-17 08:47:15

thereinmadnesslies I was only signed off on Friday. I have been referred to Occupational Health but I won’t hear from them for several weeks. I have an NHS assessment for talking therapies next week.

parrotonmyshoulder yes I am a teacher. I have not had more than a day off doing school work at a time since May half term. I am so used to trying to squeeze school work in where ever can I can that I am not sure what normal people do. It was lovely to have a weekend with my family.

timeisnotaline I have a toddler, so outside of her normal nursery hours I have to keep to the same structure.

parrotonmyshoulder Mon 27-Nov-17 09:11:43

Take the time then to switch off, enjoy a lovely festive time with your toddler and, WHEN you’re better (and you’ll know ), make your plan to return. If that’s what you want to do then. But don’t decide now.

thereinmadnesslies Mon 27-Nov-17 10:03:24

My plan is that I will go back when the feeling of missing work is greater than the feeling of panic and dread. When I can talk about the scenario led to this without bursting into tears. I think it may be a while. Psychologically, January seems good as a new year and fresh start.

Chaosofcalm Mon 27-Nov-17 10:08:18

I am currently thinking I will leave teaching. I am sick of working 40 plus hours a week (0.6 contract) and tired of constantly running around School.

thereinmadnesslies Mon 27-Nov-17 10:09:59

Would a different school help Chaos? DH is a teacher, and different schools seem to encourage different levels of work life balance.

Chaosofcalm Mon 27-Nov-17 10:38:01

I am have just dropped to part time and I think I would struggle to get part time in my subject at another school.

The biggest problem is that part time staff have to do the same amount of lots of things eg detentions, writing lessons for the department etc as fulltime staff and this year I don’t have my own classroom.

sortingmyselfoutslowly Mon 27-Nov-17 11:12:12

chaosofcalm I will send you a private message, I may be able to help

Catherine84 Mon 27-Nov-17 14:50:00

Chaosofcalm, I am in a very similar situation. Just been signed off for two weeks. Feeling very guilty, anxious and stressed about the fact that my time off is simply delaying the inevitable and I will have even more pressure and work on my return as a result. Despite my dr note I half considered going in today regardless.

Catherine84 Mon 27-Nov-17 14:50:47

I am also 0.6 and don’t have my own classroom. I could have written your post really.

onanotherday Tue 28-Nov-17 22:13:36

Yep..another teacher here have been off since half term...just can't seem to stop worrying about work. Going back to GP next week..but really wanting to resign. But as a single parent I can't afford to . I hope you take the time you need OPflowers

Oldsadman Wed 29-Nov-17 01:04:58

I work with lots of teachers from various schools and have seen so many good ones disappear from the profession because of the pressure put onto them by new school business models and business managers. Gone because they cared enough to worry about the children's best interests as opposed to the nodding like corporate monkeys. Squeezed out because they're more experienced or better paid than the cheaper keen and green alternatives. Stay off until you can detach all thoughts for at least a month. Allow three if you can afford it. Get help from a union rep for your return ASAP and don't let anyone rush you. Even if you eventually decide to change schools or profession altogether. Repeat 'incidents' of absence often play into the hands of the HR dismissal policies. Identifying and stating a disability often does the opposite. Good luck

onanotherday Wed 29-Nov-17 09:24:24

Oldsadman that is really helpful advice...built is a big part of the issue! I think staying off..for me at least is the way forward.

colouringinagain Sat 02-Dec-17 22:01:56

I slept 12 hours a night, sat on the sofa with tea, and then had to function for the after school slot 3-9. It did help though.

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