It’s a new year and I know we all had the holiday season to relax, unwind, and loosen up but very soon we’d all be looking out for some time off work, a break, a vacation because at that time it will be very well deserved.

Sometime this year you’d start planning a vacation and I’d love to make it less hectic for you. As always, I’ll give you tips and just help with your emotional state when the time comes up. You shouldn’t feel guilty about taking a break especially when you deserve it.

Like I always say, your health is paramount. You need to be fit to effectively perform your duties at work. This explains why there are labour and human rights legislations supporting vacations and time off: because you are human, not a robot.

Taking a vacation is good for you because it helps with boosting your productivity. It improves your mental state, physical well-being, and when you get back to work, you’d feel refreshed to give it your all.

According to a study conducted by The Society for Human Resource Management, taking time off work also improves engagement and overall happiness.

So the next time you are feeling extremely overwhelmed, exhausted at work, or disengaged (possibly later this year since most of us had some time off work for the holidays), it could very well be that you need a vacation.

I understand that depending on your industry or profession, some workers might have been unable to take time off work this last holidays. However, with proper scheduling and planning, vacation period may be appropriate at some other time.

The primary focus here is this: at the appropriate time, convenience or possible opportunity, it’ll be great to take some time off work for your mental state and well-being.

I remember a few months back when I got really stressed from work. I was feeling extremely swamped and heated up. I had calls rolling in all week including weekends because sometimes I have private matters to attend to on weekends; thanks to the ‘side hustle’.

With advice from loved ones I turned off my phone on one Saturday and I felt euphoric all day. Just turning off my phone and taking my mind off anything that could possibly come out of it made me feel much uplifted all day. It felt like a burden fell off my shoulder! I just could feel it.

I guess even turning off your phone could be some form of vacation. I tell you, what our devices do to our psychological state can be unbearing sometimes. You start to anticipate the worst. Maybe turn your phone off on one weekend.

vacation off work

So here are a few tips to help you feel less guilty, take the plunge when the time is right, and take some time off work when it’s due.

1. Remind yourself that you’re not indispensable

If for circumstances beyond your control, you are unable to make it to work for a long period of time, remember that there are always several people readily available to replace you or at least become temps before you resume.

Let’s be honest with ourselves, it’s the truth! I would always be realistic on this blog. So please, when your vacation is due, do yourself a favour and enjoy your break.

2. Remember that taking time off will help you recharge

Remember the story I talked about earlier? The one about turning off my phone, yeah. I realized that the next day, I was at my best. Refreshed. Recharged. Rejuvenated.

Taking time off work doesn’t necessarily have to involve a trip. You could take a short class or training for a hobby. For example, art or culinary class. Better still, if you are a couch potato like I can be sometimes, just stay at home and plain relax, but exercise when you can.  Do anything that relaxes your mind and doesn’t involve work to a large extent.

It’s important to note that the whole intent is to actually give you time away from work related stress, keep you feeling lighter, and of course, ready to resume work.

I hear that taking a break from work also promotes a healthy heart. Who doesn’t want that? A healthy heart would readily result to a happy state at work, and if you ask me, it’s what every worker seeks.

3. Plan ahead of time

Plan and make a schedule of when you intend to go on a vacation then let your boss or colleagues know well ahead of time. This will reduce the feeling of guilt if you feel any at all. It will give everyone the opportunity to carve out contingency plans.

This will also give you ample time to make plans and reduce your pile of work as much as possible before you take time off.

If you still need some convincing;

  • You need time off work to spend time with family and friends. Life can get so busy and eventful, a vacation is your way around to stay in touch every once in a while.
  • If you don’t want to end up hating your job because you are constantly burned out, then you need to take some time off work.
  • Trust me, you don’t want to be a workaholic that doesn’t even take some time off to recharge because of this post here.
  • If you still feel like you can’t take time off work, maybe because you manage a lot of affairs, at least utilize your break time at work. Use it.
  • When you go on vacation, enjoy yourself and turn off your device. It will do you a great deal.

So what do you think? Will you try to make use of your vacation this year? Please remember that you should take time off when due and needed. It’s also in your contract, so no, you shouldn’t feel guilty about time off work if it’s valid.

Share your thoughts with me and other readers, how do you plan to vacation this year?

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