Look After Number One

How do you keep a work-life balance? What about when you are unwell? Which side will you be leaning towards?

Winter is just around the corner in the southern hemisphere. With colder months ahead, there’s no better time than now to do something to get the immune system up and keep the cold and flu at bay. After catching a bad cold in October 2017 that lasted for a month – the longest I could remember, I decided to get a flu shot this year to protect myself against 4 major types of flu viruses. It may sound like a simple, logical move to some but to me – not a fan for needles and this type of immunisation, I needed to do my homework before I could convince myself and get past that mental block.

The flu fact sheet at hand was my first point of reference. It had some invaluable information and a useful Q and A section. After reading it, I no longer had any doubts. The next thing I knew, I was rolling up my sleeve and ready for the flu vaccination. A few seconds later, the nurse smiled and said: done. It was that quick and that easy. A small step but it set the tone for the next thing to come – number one.

Looking around, recently my manager has taken some time off from work to look after his dad who’s been in and out of hospital since suffering an unforeseen heart problem. When possible, he’d still come in to work for half of a day or so then leave in the afternoon to see his dad during the visitor time. While he’s tried to keep the disruption to a minimal, he’s clearly demonstrated the importance of looking out for number one and getting the priorities right, guilt free. When he was away, it was business as usual. The team still pulled together to get the job done, seemingly unaffected by his absence.

The notion of number one was a bit challenge for me. All because I was someone who used to believing that taking sick leave was for the weak, a sign of weakness. No longer! No one is made of steel, people do get sick and our bodies need time and space to recover from illness and avoid passing it on to others if contagious.

So, number one has been said, next, what is number two? – A notice I sent to my manger to tell him that I’m due for a couple of medical appointments in the following two weeks… Take care!

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