Why It’s Worth It to Take a Vacation

When is the last time you took a day off? Not so you could attend an appointment or clean the car or do some other everyday task, but to relax? How about taking a full-fledged vacation? If itís been a while, or a list of reasons why you havenít taken one pops up in your mind, you are not alone.

In the U.S., the average worker with paid vacation only takes half the days given to them. Half! This is largely due to fear of falling behind, fear of no one else being able to cover them, or fear of being unplugged from their work. For those who do not receive paid vacation, the financial barriers can be considerable, as well.

Compared to other countries, paid vacation and paid parental leave in the U.S. is embarrassing. Our country only has 10 federal holidays (and it isnít mandated that all employees get those day off), compared to over 35 mandatory paid vacation and holidays in Scandinavian countries and the UK. The U.S. is also the only economically developed nation in the world with no federal mandates on paid parental leave whatsoever, as well as no mandates for sick leave.

Living in the face of these realities can be tough for a tired worker. But that does not mean that we should forego all opportunities for a needed break. The benefits of taking a vacation are vast:

For your health!

Reducing stress and spending times with the ones we love can decrease the risk of heart attacks by 30 percent in men and up to 50 percent in women. The mental clarity and quietness that our minds crave can be recharged if we give ourselves the opportunity to unplug and unwind. Taking a break from a continuous stressor (good stress or bad!) is essential for the body to function and heal properly.

For your family!

Being purposeful with how we spend time with friends and family can do wonders. So many of us are trying to schedule quick dinner dates with a friend or cram catching-up into quick moments throughout a busy day – take some time away from the priority of work to remember the other social priorities in your life.

For your career!

Itís been shown that taking vacations can make people better and more productive employees. It makes sense: someone who never peels themselves away from their work is bound to become exhausted at some point. Self-care is absolutely essential to be successful in all of our daily roles.

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Photo credit: Thinkstock


JoAnn Paris
JoAnn Paris3 months ago

Thank you for this very interesting article.

Richard B
Richard B4 months ago

thank you for sharing

Angela AWAY K
Angela K4 months ago

Thanks for sharing

Cathy B
Cathy B4 months ago

Thank you.

Winn A
Winn A4 months ago


Winn A
Winn A4 months ago


Angela J
Angela J4 months ago


Thomas S
Thomas S4 months ago

I leave this week....au revoir :o)

Anne M
Anne Moran4 months ago

Going on vacation in September,, 2 weeks,, on the east coast... - Can’t wait,, gonna be a lotta fun,, taking planes, trains, busses, and limo...- Going to celebrate Brian’s 70th,, a BIG one for sure... xoxo xoxo

Heather B
Heather B4 months ago

People are not machines and should be treated humanely. Breaks in the form of vacations, staycations or mental health days make for happier, healthier more productive people which ultimately helps the bottom line. If companies wold focus on doing the best for people, that includes customers, workers as well as others who would benefit from a clean earth, they would ultimately enjoy tremendous success.