August arrived in a flash and according to the Board of Labor Statistics, fewer Americans with vacation benefits use up all of their time. A recent Harris poll showed there are 9,2 unused vacation days left each year on average. How about you?
I was talking with my son’s very smart friend the other day, and he said more than anything, he values his time with his family. He’d had a busy career that involved many lunches and dinners out with clients and realized it wasn’t congruent with his top priority, so he changed careers. While we’re not all able to do this, we can at least make sure we take vacation time.
If you are a paid employee, or employer, there are many benefits for you and your company that come only from your taking time off. And for those at home, whether raising a family or caring for someone, getting time off to relax is essential to your well-being and to theirs.
Here are just 7 of the many benefits of taking vacation time:
- you have more time for loved ones when you’r not responsible for everything
- your concentration will improve
- your stress level will come down
- you’ll have time for recreational things that you enjoy
- you’ll gain a new perspective about work that you just can’t get when you’re in the midst of it
- you’ll decrease your chances for burnout
- you’ll feel appreciated and rewarded when you have time on - a boost to self-esteem
If you haven’t made vacation plans yet, start thinking about how and when to take time off. Even if you don’t go away, a break from the day to day will give you all of the benefits listed above.
At the Breaking Point
I once ordered a bowl of soup in a family-owned Vietnamese restaurant and asked that it have a mild spice. Expecting a mild flavor, I took my first sip. Steam came out of my ears on the first sip. When the daughter of the chef asked me how it was I said it was pretty hot. She said “Oh, yes, when Mama isn’t happy, no one is happy. She goes a little crazy with the spices.” So before you go crazy with your “spices”, whatever they are, take a break - take vacation. You deserve it.