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10 worst things to hear when you’re ill at work

How to notice if you're approaching burnout

Sometimes we get ill, it happens to the best of us. The worst flu season on record is upon us, so there’s quite a strong chance that you or someone you work with is going to end up bringing illness into the office.

Although you should be at home resting, sometimes deadlines and responsibilities get in the way of a good day off. You may already be bracing yourself for a long day of work you aren’t not feeling up to, but on top of this you need to be braced for your colleagues too as the barrage of inappropriate and irritating comments assault your sensitive senses.

If you’re feeling fine today but you see a colleague looking under the weather, here are PA Life’s top 10 worst things to say to weary worker. Be warned, there are healthy doses of sarcasm below:

Don’t give it to me
Ah yes, because we have any control over our level of contagion. Sometimes this is spoken in jest, but remember that faking a laugh costs extra energy we can’t afford to lose when we’re full of flu.

You look ill
A brilliant comment, as it serves as a nice reminder that not only do you feel like your body is falling apart at the seams, but it’s nicely reflected in your face as well. Thanks for that.

Well don’t come near me
Because it’s not enough to just want to be left alone, you also need to feel like the sick man of Europe, unable to interact with anything without suffering the tutting of people much healthier than yourself. Trust me, we know how disgusting we are, we’re not planning on spreading it.

Don’t be sick on me
An oddly specific request, but it’s surprising how often it comes up. For the record I’ve never been sick in an office, but if I was going to it would absolutely be directed at someone that makes comments like this. Sorry but you made yourself a target…

You wouldn’t mind staying late tonight?
Yes, we would.

Oh yeah, out last night were we?
A damaging attack at your character and integrity, unfortunately you probably weren’t out last night because you have the flu. Conversely if you were out last night and this ‘flu’ is just a hangover, this list isn’t for you and you brought it on yourself.
You probably got it from me
…thank you? That’s very generous of you, I’m sorry I didn’t get you anything.

Wouldn’t you rather be at home?
No, of course not! It’s much more appealing to commute into an office in the rain, forget your umbrella and have to use a tea towel to dry yourself, it adds to the adventure! Staying in the warm in your pyjamas sounds far too boring to me…

I think I’m coming down with something as well
Oh yeah, out last night were we?

It’s that time of year
I actually catch myself saying this at all times of year. It’s always applicable, but unless it comes with a the offer of a Lemsip it’s probably not going to be very helpful. Maybe we should just call in sick

Of course this is all in good humour, I’m not really going to be sick on anyone (for now). What’s the worst thing you’ve been told while coming down with cold, flu, sickness, bubonic plague, etc? Let us know on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn.