Many of today’s workaholics shun the idea of a vacation entirely, believing that in order to succeed in today’s competitive market, they have to remain on-station 24/7, 365 days of the year. As many workers and business owners alike are finally coming to realize, however, taking a vacation is actually a huge boon for your career, and could prove indispensable towards your long-term development as a working professional who remains valuable to their firm for years to come.
Here’s why taking a vacation is excellent for your health and career alike, and why you should book your next trip to the beach as soon as possible.
The science behind vacations is clear
It’s now indisputable that vacations are literally excellent for your mental health, and that should come as no surprise; after all, who doesn’t feel better after a few days or weeks relaxing in a scenic location, or relaxing with the family members they haven’t seen in years? If you’re unconvinced, read up on the ways vacations are healthy for you, and you’ll soon be singing a different tune.
It should come as no surprise that, if vacations are beneficial to your mental and physical health, they provide a huge boost to your career prospects. Consider that many of today’s aspiring business professionals often burn out early in their careers from a work-induced stress overlord, and you’ll see why it’s important to stop, relax, and smell the roses once in a while. Some dedicated workers remain firmly entrenched against the idea of taking a vacation, however, convinced that doing so will ultimately lower their productivity thanks to the time they spent away from the office.
The reality behind vacations, however, couldn’t be any different; vacations really don’t impact productivity negatively at all, and can actually be a massive productivity booster, given that workers often come back from the beach or lake refreshed and ready to work at a faster, more efficient pace than ever before. For the most part, many workers mistakenly believe that the amount of time they spend in the office is the most important gauge of how well they’re doing, when in reality you should be measuring your productive output with little consideration into how much time you’re investing in work.
If you don’t believe me, look at Germany, a nation where vacations are cherished, and where workers actually take significantly more time off per year than Americans while simultaneously out-performing them on a productivity basis per person. The German government actually mandates a whopping six weeks of vacation time per year, a figure that will send many North American employee’s eyes bursting from their heads. In general, European companies offer their employees huge sums of time off, whereas their American counterparts struggle to keep their workers in their cubicles for as long as possible.
Learning to redefine success
If you don’t want to spend long hours at the office only to be outperformed by somebody who was there for half as long but were more effective in their working hours, you need to consider finally taking that vacation to Iceland you’ve been putting off for all these years. Stop measuring your career success in hours, and start measuring it in productivity, which you can massively boost with some recuperative time off that helps you blow off some steam.
If you don’t enjoy your time off, you can’t possible regenerate your faculties to the point where you’re ready to work at a faster, more efficient pace than ever before. The vacation gap is actually growing wider between North America and Europe, which could be indicative of why so many American workers are reporting huge levels of stress while underperforming when compared to their European counterparts. If you’re a business owner afraid of taking time off because your property may fall into disrepair while you’re away, consider how much you’re costing yourself by chaining yourself to your desk all days of the year, too, and you may soon come to value the occasional day off.
None of this is to say that North American firms should adopt European business models that emphasize months at a time away from the office, but it goes without saying that many of today’s businesses are doing themselves and their workers a serious disservice by refusing to take a vacation. To have a successful career in the long-term, you need to look good at work, and be producing effective results, which you can’t do with huge bags under your eyes derived from countless days spent at the office instead of on a relaxing vacation.
As you mull over your future, regardless of
whatever industry you’re currently in, consider taking a vacation, as the
benefits of doing so will soon become apparent when you return to work rested
and ready to achieve at a higher level than ever before.