When considering this post, I had to weigh out whether people should consider working while they are sick or feeling miserable. Yet, the reality is many who are temporarily, chronically or terminally ill worry about money, finance and survival when they are feeling almost at a point of collapsing from their physical and mental ailment.
Depending on whether you have a contagious illness or the common cold, a temporary decision to stay at home or take time off may be possible without drastically interrupting your income. For more extended illness such as asthma, arthritis or lupus, some choose to grin and bear it, taking advantage of available treatments to cope and move through providing for themselves. Others are debilitated and can’t simply pull themselves up by the bootstraps or make a living while enduring some of the most awful physical and mental ailments.
In any of these cases, income can be affected, causing much inconvenience and worry. However, some practical actions may help alleviate the challenge of making an income while sick.
Cut back expenses and sell off excess. Even on a depleted body, lowering expenditures and selling off things you don’t need or no longer have energy to manage can help provide needed funds. Asking a friend to help is key.
Telecommute. Many employers see the benefit of having remotely located employees. Ask your employer if there are options for that for your current position or if there is another role you can apply for that allows you to not have to be physically present.
Become an independent contractor. Some have left jobs and become entrepreneurs primarily because of the inflexible nature of many companies. If you have a viable skill that has made you income in the past, it may be possible to support yourself by working for yourself. A word of caution: Working for yourself is often harder than working for an employer. Weigh pros and cons very carefully if you are considering this option for the purpose of health reasons. Freedom is a definite plus if frequent doctors appointments interfere with a traditional 9-to-5 work schedule.
Scale back your responsibilities. If you have a physical injury, your medical provider may write orders for limited work responsibility without putting you on full disability. If you don’t have doctors orders, don’t be afraid to see what options for less intensive work are available or if there is a coworker willing to trade off some tasks to each of your mutual benefit.
Work part-time. If a full-time schedule is draining, there are often gigs or part-time positions that will allow you to get some income without wearing you down completely. Try using services like Flexjobs or Craigslist to search for part-time or creative gigs that you may not ordinarily find listed elsewhere.
Let go and let God. This is an adage that is often advised if worry is overtaking someone. Occasionally income really isn’t an issue, but the attachment to it or the addiction to attaining more is out of balance. In true cases of need, and especially when illness is present, it truly may be out of your power to change your circumstances. Make spirituality your focus and learn to let go of excessive worry about material things because your spirituality and health is the first priority. Things may be uncomfortable but they are not impossible to live with.
The priority here is self-care, both in regard to health and providing for necessities. With careful thought, planning and the cooperation of those around us, working while sick may be able to help us maintain a sense of independence and give us the funds to survive.