Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Do You Need A Vacation? How Do you Know When

How to Tell If You Need a Vacation or not

Most of us are guilty of the same thing. We work too hard and have no time to relax. We often think that more work means more money, and that in turn means a better life. This over-worked and over-stressed lifestyle has its toll though, and many of us are paying it. It is estimated that one third of the workforce does not take vacation each year, and their vacation days go unused every year. What does this mean? This might mean you aren't working up to your potential, and the cracks will eventually be evident to everyone, including your boss.
We often think of days off for vacation in what it will cost us rather than what we gain from it. Many companies offer to pay for unused vacation days at the end of the year, so not taking the vacation pays more. You still get your regular paycheck for working the week you should have been out on vacation, and you get a nice bonus at the end of the year. You may think of each day on vacation as a dollar amount, and you may see that dollar amount as something you are not earning.
In fact, you may be tiring yourself down so much that you aren't working up to your potential. The mind needs to rest, and sometimes, that means more than taking the weekend off. Even worse, we don't stop working at quitting time. We are often glued to our cell phones in case a business call comes in, and we take work home on the weekend, if we don't end up finding another way to work. We fall under the impression that the world will fall apart without us. If we can't be reached at three AM, or if we miss an email because we ran out for coffee, we brand ourselves as slackers.
You may think you are too keyed up for vacation, and that your ambition and determination make it hard for you to step aside for some time off. However, you should think about the benefits of getting away and turning off your business cell phone, and ignoring your email account. Those who vacation come back renewed and invigorated. They often have a new perspective on their job and on life, and they are motivated to get back into their job and accomplish something. Employees who vacation are better employees all the way around.
If you find that you are stalling out when it comes to tasks that are normally easy for you, or that you seem to be tired and stressed no matter what you do to relax or how much sleep you get, you should consider taking a vacation. Everyone should have a week off per year, and some need more. You may notice that your work is slipping and is not up to your usual level of skill. This does not necessarily mean you have lost your touch, it might just mean that you need to take some time off. They don't call it "recharging your batteries" for nothing. A trip and time off from work may end up being one of the best things you can do for yourself and your career.

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