Getting Away

Countries and flags“Do everyone a favor – get out of here. Just go away.”

Have you heard these words from anyone at your job or at home? If so, they might be giving you some good advice.

Americans are known to be hard workers, with the average number of paid vacation days in the U.S. ranking below that of most other developed countries. And, even when employees have accrued them, many don’t take all of their eligible time off. A recent study of American workers found that 15% had not taken any vacation days at all in the past year.

Employees relate that their reluctance to go “off the grid” stems from various motivating factors: wanting to prove loyalty to the boss; being anxious about the pile of work waiting for them when they return; saving days for potential emergencies or a longer vacation the following year; supporting co-workers needs; fears that their income will go down.

Yet studies indicate that workers who take vacation time are actually more productive overall than their colleagues who decline to be away from the job. They also improve their physical and mental health, avoiding burnout and reducing stress. And research has shown that close relationships improve when the family vacations together. The shared experience facilitates and strengthens bonds, communication and family solidarity.

Whether you’re a Baby Boomer, Gen Y, or Millennial, don’t feel guilty, get out of here and have some fun! Take your particular circumstance into account when planning your vacation. You may be looking for serenity in nature, adventure travel, a trip to the beach, the stimulation of education, the engagement in an experience abroad, a reunion with family or friends – or even a way to combine some of these. You’ll find examples here on our website of ways to enhance your sense of well-being, stretch your boundaries, or enjoy a staycation in your own neck of the woods.

Following my own advice, I’m off to Israel tomorrow – so see you later!

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