Kansas and Missouri Professional Licensing Attorney Discusses the Benefit of Taking a Sabbatical

Sabbaticals were once a perk of college professors who might take time to travel or to write. More companies are considering allowing their professionals to take sabbaticals, either paid or unpaid and have reported amazing results. It turns out that sabbaticals benefit the professional who gets extended time away from his or her employer or work environment and well as the organization itself. The organization has a chance to see how its succession plan will work after the more-senior person leaves the group by instilling initiative in less experienced or junior employees how to step up and make decisions. The people returning from sabbatical and those who filled in during the extended leave feel a sense of perspective and have renewed energy once the sabbatical is over. In short, sabbaticals are one method of handling mental health issues in the workplace.

The question that follows naturally is why do many professions not offer a sabbatical time when there are so many benefits to taking a sabbatical? Many professional licensees work in industries that customarily do not allow employees to take large chunks of time off. Convincing an employer to grant leave of one month or more, either with or without pay, and return to the same position is a tall task. The natural response from an employer to a request for sabbatical leave is immediate recoil; the topic is taboo and the idea controversial. On the other hand, an employee might have a hard time even asking for a sabbatical while employed an industry in which sabbaticals are not the norm. They rightly fear rejection of the idea out-of-hand but also the thought of being demoted or fired because they want to take such a long time off.

A sabbatical is entirely different than a vacation. Professional licensees take vacations as needed to get away from the demands of the job just for a break where you cram family time or housework into a week or two out of the office. Dedicated professional licensees might even continue to check emails and phone messages in anticipation of returning to the workplace after a short respite. In other words, you never put the job out of your head and forget about it for a while.

Those who take sabbaticals set out on their journey with an entirely different frame of mind than when simply heading on vacation.  The person taking a sabbatical is not merely taking time off to do other things. The person on sabbatical wants to immerse himself or herself in something not only as a distraction from ever-present stressors of daily life but out of a genuine interest in the subject matter. A true sabbatical is meant to do a “deep dive” into a hobby, to study, to write, to learn a new language, or pursue another passion project. Thus, the idea behind a true sabbatical, rather than a vacation, stems from a desire to renew one’s spirit, emotions, and mid, as well as refresh the body.

Professional licensees returning to work after a sabbatical return refreshed, anxiety-fee, renewed and rejuvenated. They are able to resume their work with vigor and a renewed sense of ambition because the sabbatical allowed them to clear their heads. Alternatively, a sabbatical could convince the professional that his or her chosen profession is the wrong one and that it is time to leave to do smoothing else. A sabbatical can provide a sense of clarity that vacation simply cannot.

Declining Mental Health can Lead to Licensing Discipline

Call Kansas and Missouri Professional Discipline Attorney Danielle Sanger today at 785-979-4353 to schedule a consultation if you are a professional licensee facing discipline stemming from mental fatigue, anxiety, or other mental health problems. You can rely on Attorney Sanger’s knowledge, experience, and most importantly, compassion to protect you, your profession, your family, and your way of life.