Feeling under the weather? Usually, at this time of year people start dropping like flies with colds, flus and general exhaustion and the office begins to empty out. Illness is hard to avoid when everyone around you on the morning commute is coughing into their newspapers.
It might be worth taking a sick day now, before it develops into anything more serious. Sometimes we need a brief time-out. Some time to get away from the rat race and recuperate at home with a boxset on the go.
With these days few and far between, we’re sure you’ll want to get the maximum relaxation you can out of your day off.
That’s why we’ve put together this list on how to make the most of your sick day, so you can return to work fresh as a daisy and ready to go.
Best thing about this list? The majority of these can be done from the comfort of your own bed!
Whip up an elaborate breakfast
Instead of grabbing a slice of toast on your way out the door, take this rare opportunity to make an elaborate breakfast. Scrambled eggs and bacon or avocado on toast with an artful sprinkling of coriander? You decide. Either way, bring your feast back to bed on a tray and eat like a King.
(Even better if you get someone to make it for you).
Boast of your culinary prowess by posting a snap of your masterpiece on Instagram and be admired by your followers! #breakfastgoals
Gather everything you need so you never have to get up again!
Before you settle back into bed, gather everything you need around you so you only have to leave for essential toilet trips (a bedpan is a step too far).
Don’t forget plenty of drinks, snacks, any medicine you might need, as well as a collection of books, magazines and other entertainment.
Bunker down in a cosy den
To get maximum enjoyment out of your sick day, you want to create the cosiest environment possible.
Snuggling up in your duvet with the softest of pillows will feel like heaven for your tired body. Go for a pillow made with hypoallergenic materials and a natural cotton sheet which is kinder on your body when it’s feeling vulnerable.
Once inside, you can hide away from the world. After all, you don’t want to infect anyone else with your germs!
Drink plenty of liquids
If you’re feeling too peaky to manage a full English, drinking lots of fruit juice is a great way of cramming in some extra vitamins. Herbal teas, fruit juices, and water are the best choices for maximum re-hydration. Popping a Berocca or a vitamin tablet is also a good idea if you want to enjoy your time off without feeling too awful.
Let your thoughts float away
Trying out some meditation can be a great way of slowing down and reconnecting with yourself. It has even been shown to reduce stress which can actually boost your immune system!
Here’s some tips on how to get started:
- Take slow, deep breaths and really concentrate on your breathing.
- Mentally scan your body, from your head to your toes, noticing how each part feels and actively relaxing any tense muscles. Pay particular attention to your shoulders and around your jaw line which is where most people hold tension.
- Some people find listening to relaxing music and focusing on the sounds helps.
- If your mind starts to wander and you start thinking about what’s for lunch, bring your attention back to your breath.
- Or, use a handy app like Headspace to help you on your way to meditative bliss.
Stretch it out
Gentle exercise can do a whole lot of good to how you’re feeling, especially when it can be done without leaving your mattress.
Gentle yoga stretches can be done from bed and there are lots of videos on Youtube to follow.
If you have a cold and a blocked nose, these types of stretches can help relieve congestion, but be careful not to do anything too strenuous if you have a chesty cough or severe muscle aches.
Write a to-do list
Although you’re supposed to be resting, it won’t hurt to get ahead for the rest of the week. Making a to-do list can be a cathartic experience, as getting your thoughts down on paper helps to clear your mind of unnecessary stresses. There’s nothing more satisfying than ticking each item off as it’s completed!
Here’s some ideas of things you can plan for:
- Plan your meals and shopping list for the week to save time in the evenings.
- Make a list of the chores you need to get done this month. Calling grandma and cleaning behind the fridge may not be the most exciting of plans, but at least you’ll be relieved when they’re out the way.
- Make some personal goals of things you want to achieve this year. Whether it’s nabbing that promotion or completing a fun run, giving yourself realistic goals keeps you moving forwards.
- Make a bucket list of fun things you want to try in your lifetime. Bungee jumping anyone?
Catch-up on your TV shows
If a standard evening after work consists of getting home, collapsing on the sofa and falling asleep 10 minutes into the series you and your housemates have been trying to watch for the last month, taking a sick day could be the perfect time to catch up on missed TV.
When you go back to work, you can actually join in the conversations around the water cooler about who was killed off in the last episode and actually know what you’re talking about.
Curl up with a good book
Curling up with a good book can be a delightful way to spend the day, and something not many of us get the chance to do very often. Not to mention, you’ll be able to impress your colleagues with your newfound cultural knowledge.
Reach out to old friends
Your day off is a great opportunity to ring your best mate from Uni who you haven’t spoken to in months, or the friend you always miss due to conflicting work schedules. A leisurely phone chat with someone you love can be a surprisingly good cure.
If your nose is so blocked you don’t fancy speaking, why not catch up via messenger and reply to all the messages and invitations piling up in your inbox.
Practice some self-care
Who doesn’t love a spot of pampering? Giving yourself a snazzy manicure or doing a facemask is a relaxing treat and might even make your pale, ill face look a little more perky.
Bash out some emails
If work is manic right now and the thought of returning to your desk with it’s mountain of unfinished projects and unanswered emails is making you break into hives, it might be worth doing a bit of work from home.
At least, this way, you don’t have to brave the cold and the stress of the commute. Replying to emails or finishing a report feels a lot easier when writing from between the sheets.
Get some Z’s
Despite repeated Sunday night promises to ourselves to get to bed at a reasonable time, it rarely happens. After-work drinks and friend’s birthdays tend to get in the way of your full 8 hours. Your sick day is your chance to get as much sleep as possible. Unplug, switch off and feel restored.
Plan a holiday
Having something exciting to look forward to in the calendar is a great way of keeping you going through the cold winter months. Planning a holiday with friends in sunnier climes, or even a day trip to the country is a nice way to reset. With a whole day off work, you have the time to really trawl the internet for the best deals.
Start your own blog
Your sick day could be the perfect time to get your creative juices flowing.
Passionate about building bikes or making origami animals? Write a blog about it!
You might be surprised at how many people share your passion. Starting your own blog can be a fun activity, especially if your job doesn’t allow much room to explore your imaginative side.
Have the best sick day of your life!
If you’re going to be spending all day in bed, you want to make sure your mattress is as comfortable as possible. The Sid mattress, with its 6 layers of high performing support and memory foam, provides a luxurious base for any activity to choose to do on your day off.