Five Productive Things to Do on a Sick Day

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It’s cold and flu season! Why does cold and flu season occur during the winter months, you may ask?

Who cares, that’s not the point of this article. The point is, if the stars align and you’re one of the unfortunate souls to come under the weather in the face of a very busy schedule, keeping up with your daily to-do list is nigh impossible, and lying on the couch doped up out of your tree and watching Netflix certainly isn’t going to help. But all is not lost!

Here are five things you can do to ease the productivity burden as you convalesce back into the 100% version of yourself.


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This might seem counterintuitive, but if you’re like me, your daily sleep schedule can jump up to 12 hours when you’re sick. Why is that? Because your immune system does its best work when you’re lights out.

So if you’re feeling the least bit tired, listen to your body and rest for a while. You’ll probably be feeling better even quicker if you do.

Work (a bit)

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I’m not saying stroll into work and give everyone else your flu. That’s just cruel.

If you have some looming deadlines, doing even just 20 – 30 minutes of light work while you’re home may give you some major peace of mind. At the very least, you can sweep away all the small stuff so you can go back into work when you’re healthy and dive right into the bigger tasks.


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Cleaning is something we always have to do and always put off doing, so what better time than when you’re just existing like a miserable mess inside your apartment?

Take 30 minutes to an hour and tidy your place, do some laundry, take the garbage out, etc. You’ll definitely feel better afterwards. Remember – keep it light, you still need to rest (and something about noxious chemical fumes, vigorous scrubbing, and colds just doesn’t seem to mesh).


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Some light exercise when you’re sick can actually be a good thing for your immune system. High intensity interval training, however, not so much.

Some yoga, strength training, or even as little as a walk around the block (mmm, fresh air!) can also do wonders for your positivity levels, and maybe even give you some added energy to do other things on the list!

Remember – skip the gym when you’re unwell. Getting other gym-goers up close and personal with your business when you’re a mucus spraying mess is sort of selfish (and gross.)

Set Some Goals

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Hey, New Year’s isn’t the only time to make some personal goals!

When you’re sitting at home, why not take some time to tackle some areas of your life you want to improve?

Make a list of things you’d like to improve or change, and do some good-old fashioned 1-month, 3-month and 12-month goal setting. Having some lofty goals in mind can help you feel optimistic even when you’re neck deep in used tissues.


Remember, doctors don’t just recommend rest and lots of fluids because they’re tired of your whining and want you out of their hair.

These should always be priority numero uno when you’re sick, but by addressing some of the items above, you’ll return to normal feeling like your life didn’t completely slip into a three-day black hole of Nyquil, movie marathons, and sullenly staring out of windows.


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