From 2006 to 2010, the number of workers who said they took a mental health day went up 18 percent. In 2011 alone, 52 percent of workers surveyed said they called in sick when they were well.
What are we doing with these phony sick days? Oh, tons of things.
1. Watching TV. In the Kronos survey, TV topped the list of things people did during their mental health days. Eleven percent of Americans said they'd called in sick specifically to watch sports. This will shock no one who has reported to work during March Madness, only to find zero competition for the good coffee.
2. Staying in bed. Number two on the list in the same survey, staying in bed was a popular way to while away a stolen work day.
3. Recovering from "a big night." In another survey, by Australian recruitment consultant Robert Waters, 8 percent of respondents said they'd taken the day off to recover from a hangover, basically. (I mean, maybe they meant that they'd had a big night of yoga and green tea, and needed a day to meditate on their progress, but probably not, right?)
Of course, not all bogus sick days are inspired by frivolous reasons. Human resources consultant CCH points out that economic pressures and corporate leave policies force some parents, for example, to take time off of work to care for sick kids.
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