A saying that seems to be getting more traction around the workplace these days is that there's a need for folks to take a vacation for their vacations. Which, if you read through the absurdity, probably means something else, most likely that the annual vacation taken by the average working stiff simply isn't long enough.
According to The Sleep Judge, a website that adjudicates the quality of mattresses, only 26 percent of more than a thousand respondents said they were totally ready and willing to get back to work after taking two weeks off. An additional 23 percent said they were somewhat ready, but more disconcerting was that more than half of study participants declared they weren't at all prepared to get back into the daily grind.
Fear of Dropping Productivity
America comes across as a nation that lives to work, instead of the other way around. Given its reputation as the land of opportunity, that's not surprising. Only one in three bosses surveyed actually encourage their employees to take time off, while employees shy away from vacations out of fear of dropping in productivity or even losing their jobs.
However, stats from the study tell a different story. Among those who took 15 days off annually, 76 percent of them reported feeling more energized, while 68 percent felt rested, 65 percent felt more productive and 56 percent believed they were more creative upon their return. On average, those results were roughly five percentage points higher than those who took only two weeks off and more than 10 percentage points more than folks who settled for only a couple days off each year.
Holidays are proven to be effective stress reducers, allowing vacationers to unwind, relax and eventually refocus themselves once their time off ends. However, there's no legislation in the U.S. mandating a standard period for paid leave, while countries like the U.K. make it mandatory for employees to take off 28 days a year for vacation.
No time off?
As for how much time a person should take off, that may depend on the person's physiology and the type of work performed. However, actually dedicating a few days towards a vacation is probably better than the results of a Allianz Global survey. Those results revealed that more than half of working Americans haven't taken a vacation in more than a year, while more than one-third reported eschewing holidays the last two years.