Posted on March 16, 2017 by Dr.Paul
For many Americans, vacation is a luxury, but it probably shouldn’t be. Though not required by law, paid vacation is one of the most common benefits offered by employers, and vacationing is important: it matters for our physical and mental health, productivity levels, and even overall happiness. Here are a few important reasons to make a commitment to a full-length, work-free vacation this year.
- Vacations are important for your health and well-being. It may come as no particular surprise that workers returning from a one or two-week vacation re-enter the workplace feeling refreshed—and that feeling lasts. Workers report feeling less stressed after a vacation, with more energy, greater overall life satisfaction, and even a lowered risk of depression.
But vacations are just as important for your physical health: in fact, research shows that those who take vacations have fewer physical problems, lower cholesterol levels, and even a lower risk of heart disease than those who don’t.
- Vacations will make you a more productive, focused, and valuable employee. Managers, take note: employee burnout is real, and it often affects those who don’t take a yearly vacation of at least one week. Over time, increasing job stress can lead to significant reductions in productiveness and effectiveness on the part of employees. By contrast, research shows that those who take vacations return with greater focus and energy. They’re more productive, show up to work more often, and even do better on performance reviews.
- Many people don’t use their vacation days at all—but you should. Nearly half of all Americans choose not to take their owed vacation days—but research suggests that this is a mistake. Workers cite different reasons for eschewing their allotted days: maybe they’re knee-deep in a project, or up for a promotion.
But vacations have many important benefits—as mentioned above, they’re important for health and happiness, but they also provide an opportunity to expand the mind, bond with family, and have new experiences.
- Even on vacations, many people continue to work—but that’s a bad idea. Most workers admit to, at the very least, answering the odd email or taking a work call while on a trip. However, research suggests that this seemingly minor choice can add to increased stress and exhaustion, essentially cancelling out the benefits of taking a vacation in the first place. This year, make a commitment to tuning out completely—when the week’s over, you’ll be glad you did.
For more great health and wellness tips, contact us at PMR today!