Just curious about what some thoughts are around taking stress leave. Is it a career k–ler? Is it a good idea? I’m miserable, I don’t want to spend my time in this dysfunctional workplace anymore. My sanity is on the line. I don’t know how much more I can take. But I don’t want to jeopardize my career because I still need a job.
7 replies (most recent on top)
Any sick time can be a career k–ler...but the biggest career k–ler ANYWHERE is DEATH. If you die of a heart attack or a stroke or any stress related illness, your career is over...but then, so is your life. Better to get out and go find somewhere else to work...getting the Enbridge stress out of your life
It k–led my career. But when you’re sick and the doctor tells you to get away from work to get treatment, it’s for a reason.
I don’t know, but it doesn’t sound like you really qualify for stress leave. Have you experienced physical symptoms for which you saw a doctor? Are you seeing a therapist?
Short term leave is not intended for people who hate their job or their environment. It’s for people exhibiting real, treatable distress. There’s a difference. Can you get a physician to sign off that the circumstances of your life are threatening your health?
If not, look for another job.
Find another job and take a vacation with your family before you start it. Life is beautiful.
This my personal opinion obviously, but it may or may not set back your career... I would guess it depends on a lot of factors, like your performance and how you are perceived by management more broadly, and to what degree there is a stigma among the people in your department. Like, if you’re a solid performer who has a long history of getting stuff done and being reliable, I don’t think a leave would matter much - not to mention it might be beneficial to your career to take time off to get well vs staying and having the stress negatively impact your performance or interactions with coworkers... know what I mean? You can also choose to keep most of the details of your medical leave private from your boss - if you end up submitting paperwork for a leave, I think you end up working through the insurer and there are many rules about privacy enforced by law, but the specifics might be a bit different depending on which province you are in, so be sure to seek guidance from someone who knows the process and rules.
All of that said, if what you are talking about is a medical leave, I would personally listen to my doctor. As others have said, health is more important than anything ... although I do also see that going on a leave might add to your stress in some ways :/ It’s a sh–ty thing. Just know you aren’t alone. I’ve used the EAP and most coworkers I’m close enough with to have personal conversations with have said they’ve used it too. The amalgamation left many of us feeling powerless and like our professional future (as well as personal future by proxy) are out of our control... Corporate could swoop in and close down and office, oursource a function, lay-off more people to save money, implement a new policy that f—s us over, etc. It’s hard to trust anything when the rug is pulled out from under you repeatedly and it feels like there is no “justice” of any kind. The wheel just grinds on and there are no consequences for treating humans poorly... which is life, I suppose, but it is hard. I miss working at a company where I felt like my fate was in my hands and I trusted the people making the decisions to look out for me and my interests (and I would do that in return). The big company feel of Enbridge and the degree to which Corporate meddles in the business units destroyed that, at least for now.
Anyway, rambling aside, the EAP can truly be helpful and they have lots of options for interacting with them including chatting online. And don’t feel like you have to listen to the people who say just to leave because “life is too short” - not sure if this is the case with you, but if you are depressed, it’s natural to find things that might otherwise seem easy extremely difficult. Just getting out of bed is an ordeal sometimes, I get it. To me, it makes more sense to treat the depression or whatever is going on first, and then you’ll be in a better position to be able to assess your options and move ahead. That said, if the stress is all related to specific things at work (exclusively external sources), then leave by all means and get that out of your life. I think the EAP or health professional could guide you though that - help you figure out what sources of stress can be removed and which you’ll need to work on internally.
And having given all this advice, I will also say - be weary of advice! What works for one person won’t work for others. Focus on yourself and listen to true medical professionals, not the derps (especially from HR) that think they know sh– because they have a BA in psychology.
There are better options out there, leave and dont look back. Feeling trapped is different than being trapped
Your health is more important than anything else, career k–ler or not. But, if you generally are feeling burnt out then talk to your doctor and no can fault you for taking medical leave. If you feel afterward that either you are punished for it or realize life is too short to continue to put yourself through this, then do yourself a favor and find what makes you happy.