What’s a vacation worth to you?
The average person gets three weeks of vacation a year, that’s 15 days. Say you start working around age 21 and retire when you are 65. That means that you work for 44 years.
Okay, now let’s just say that the average person makes $15 an hour (I believe it’s closer to $24 but for the sake of guessing on the low end we will say $15).
44 years x 15 days x $15 = $10,000
If you never take your vacation days (and you don’t get paid out for them) it’s like giving away $10k.
Is your mental health worth $10k? Are family memories worth $10k? I don’t know about you, but there are some days I would pay about that much just to stay under the covers an extra ten minutes.
You are probably thinking that you are seeing the millennial in me come out, but honestly, vacation should not be a mindset. It should not be aligned with a generational way of thinking.
EVERY PERSON DESERVES (AND SHOULD) USE THEIR VACATION. If you are accountable for people on your team, please make them take their vacation time. I promise you that it will make them a better employee (and a happier one) in the long run.
Here are just a few more reasons why it’s important to take your vacation.
Have you ever noticed how you miss someone more when they aren’t around? If you never take the time to break away and are always on call, it’s hard for anyone to notice how much you do. It’s important to let your team and company cover off on all your tasks occasionally because it ensures that everyone else on your team is aware of everything you are doing. It makes you more valuable. If you have ever covered for one of your strongest performers (or really anyone for that matter) – you know, you have never been happier to have them on the team then the moment that they returned from vacation. I have said “dear god, I’m glad your back, don’t ever leave me again” on multiple occasions after some of my team members have taken a week off. It becomes increasingly obvious how much they do when other people must cover off on their to-do list. It’s okay to make them miss you a little bit.
There is proof that you need to check-out occasionally to keep your mind in tip-top shape. Think about the rest of your body. You wouldn’t run or lift weights day in and day out for 44 years. You might work out once or twice a day but you’re not working out all the time. Your brain is made up of cells and tissues just like the rest of your body and in order to function properly it needs rest – and by rest, I mean more than just sleep. It needs time to wonder. It needs time to break away from everyday problems. Time to shut off.
For me, I know that there have been multiple times where I went on vacation and after being away for a few days when I came back one of my biggest problems to tackle had a very clear solution that I just didn’t see because I never took the time to step away and let it roll around in the back of my mind.
It’s also important to take a vacation because you are more than just what you do for a living. Saying this a little louder for all the workaholics out there… YOU ARE MORE THAN WHAT YOU DO FOR A LIVING. You need to make time to spend time and connect with your friends and family. Nurture relationships and make memories.
Because… You Matter:
You only get one life. Just one. You should find some time to spend with yourself.
Drink a cup of coffee on the porch. Take a long walk in the woods. Paint. Binge your favorite television show. Hug your dog.
Make sure that you connect with yourself and give yourself some time to slow down.
The only thing that you have in life is time. You should at least spend some of it doing something fun and relaxing… right?