If you take a look at the calendar, it will tell you that summer is rapidly approaching – but anyone without an a/c will tell you that summer showed up weeks ago (if you want to know who those people are, look for the ones with sweat pooling through their shirts and looks of deranged desperation on their faces).
With summer, naturally, comes the opportunity to take a warm vacation. But who has time for a trip to the beach, amirite?
Apparently no one, because last year 42 percent of Americans didn’t use a single one of their vacation days, with an additional 16 percent taking fewer than five days.
If that sounds unhealthy, it’s because it is.
The Benefits of Taking a Vacation
The lack of R&R is taking its toll. Skimping out on your vacation days can lead to decreased productivity, higher stress levels, and an increased risk of heart problems, including fatal heart attacks.
The benefits of taking a vacation, on the other hand, are vast and innumerable. And just in case preventing yourself from having a heart attack isn’t reason enough to pack up your swimsuit and sunscreen and head to the beach, I’ve put together four reasons you need to take that much-needed vacation this summer.
1. Decrease Your Risk of Heart Attack
An annual vacation can cut a person’s risk of heart attack by 50 percent. (I know I already mentioned the heart thing, but it’s worth repeating. Seriously.)
2. Vacations Improve Personal Relationships
Even the anticipation of vacation travel generates an increase in positive feelings about one’s life as a whole, family, economic situation, and health. And on the other end of your trip? 53 percent of employed Americans say they come back from time off feeling reconnected with their family.
3. Manage Your Stress Now and Forever
When you don’t take time to recharge, studies suggest your body’s ability to create a feeling of peace and calm weakens, and in the future, you’ll have a more difficult time regulating stress. Instead, by treating yourself to the occasional break, you literally teach your body how to calm itself down in times of trouble.
4. Your Performance Will Improve
Burnout is real, y’all. Overwork costs employers about $150 billion a year in stress-related absences. But you don’t have to worry about burnout if you treat yo’self once in awhile. Travelers experience a 25 percent increase in performance on vigilance tests after returning from vacation. Take a break now, and you’ll be back at work feeling refreshed in no time!
So, have we convinced you yet? Put in your request for time off, book your flight, and press play on the sun and surf playlist below. You’ll feel like you’re in Margaritaville in no time.
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