It seems like everyone’s sick right now, so this is a PSA: take a break and get some rest! Your body doesn’t care that you took time off three weeks ago for the holidays. It cares that it’s not getting what it needs when you try to power through.

I cannot tell you how many times over the years—but especially since so much of the world went remote—I have hopped on a video call only to find a very sick face looking (and sniffing, and coughing) back at me. Every time this happens, I give them the opportunity to reschedule. And sometimes they take it! Because it’s truly not a big deal.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Just because someone’s work now happens in their home does not mean that they live at work. Just because a worker’s office is next door to (or in a corner of) their bedroom does not mean that they should clock in if they’re sick. Just because we have the technology to work whenever/forever does not mean that we should.

Certainly, there are meetings that are too high stakes or too difficult to reschedule. And for those, you gotta pump yourself full of Mucinex DM, move Zoom’s “touch up my appearance” slider all the way up, and be ready to hit that mute button when you need to cough up a lung.

But for the other meetings, think about how much sharper you’ll be if you reschedule it to a time when it doesn’t feel like your brain is draining out of our nostrils and is instead intact in your skull, ready to work.

Note: This post is for people with PTO, sick time, etc. I understand how those without it have to make the difficult the decision between getting paid and getting better.

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