As working millennials, we are accustomed to the romanticized image of hustling. We’ve always stuck by the mantra that “work is life” and believed that productivity meant finishing task after task with no breaks in between. While this may have been true in college, it’s much less so now in the work force.
Many of us often feel discouraged to take time off from work because it gives off the impression that we’re slacking off. In most cases, taking time off would just make us feel restless and guilty knowing that there’s so much on our plate that’s yet to be done.
But in fact, not taking a vacation does much more harm than good. It increases the risk of getting sick and lethargic within the duration of the work week, decreases job satisfaction, and paves the way for burnout.
The next time you’re thinking twice about using your vacation leave credits, take note of the following:
Work should never get in the way of family and self
Work is never a priority when it starts getting in the way of family time and personal development. When you find yourself missing out on birthdays and weekend staycations with family, let go of your job for a while and be with the ones who truly matter.
It’s beneficial to your overall health
Rest days are important to be refreshed and reenergized especially when you feel increasing stress from work. According to a USTA Study, “men who don’t take vacations are more likely to suffer from heart disease, while women who don’t take time off are more likely to suffer from depression.” Not only will taking some time off benefit you physically, but also mentally.
It’s not convertible to cash
There is no tangible payoff for not using your vacation leaves. So might as well use them up!
To avoid burning out
Burning out from your job is what I’d like to call “the point of no return”. It’s that point when the stress has overwhelmed you completely, leaving you tired, unmotivated, detached from your friends and family, and lacking purpose. The thought “What am I still doing all this for?” constantly echoes in every chamber of your mind, and your productivity just drops.
Don’t let work take over your life because it just isn’t worth it. Know when your physical and mental health is being compromised, and don’t be afraid to take time off for a few days to take care of your wellbeing.
It allows you to work on your passion projects
Vacation leaves are also a great way to focus on your passion project — a.k.a. the one you’ve been keeping on the backburner because of your full-time job. Passion projects are great ways to destress too because you’re generally much more driven and happy to work on them! Besides, it doesn’t hurt to get your mind off of your job every once in a while.
It encourages teamwork and collaboration among your coworkers
Taking time off from your job likewise helps your coworkers become much more aware of your contributions to the team and your daily work load, and also inspires team collaboration to make up for your absence.
It gets the creative juices flowing
Sometimes, deviating from your routine can spark that creativity you’ve needed. A study finds that being idle, daydreaming, and relaxing actually makes the mind much more active than expected. Positive emotions likewise inspire inventiveness and out-of-the-box thinking. You’ll be surprised by the number of ideas you can actually have while away on vacation.
It makes you more productive
When you take a break from your job, your mind becomes much clearer, more relaxed, and ready to take on work again! So don’t be fooled into thinking that working tirelessly day and night equals to productivity. At the end of it all, working smart will always trump working hard.
What are your thoughts about this? Share them in the comments section below!