A new report in Forbes on the vacation habits of Americans highlights the health issues involved in skipping breaks and embracing a workaholic culture! Expedia’s aptly named Vacation Deprivation survey notes that 35% of respondents will not use their full vacation time (already among the lowest in the world at 14 days a year), leaving an average of 3 days unused. Reasons include job insecurity and the emphasis on productivity. The article notes that vacations help people to decompress and combat stress, a common cause of dangerous diseases in both men and women. The hospitality industry is as vulnerable to the ailments and as needing of the remedies as any other but, nevertheless, lags many other industries in addressing the issue fully.
What the report does not mention is that the workaholic culture is strongly promoted by the media! In an age of 30 something Internet billionnaires, Average Joes and Janes turned celebrity bloggers and hard-driving, million-dollar CEOS, working hard and long is a given – it’s not about juggling priorities anymore as it is about getting ahead and getting there first! Success in the workplace has become an important aspect of all-round happiness. Add to this, the blackberry warriors and Treo addicts for whom staying connected equals staying in control! Nevertheless, as in most things in life, striking a balance (which may vary with each individual) between vacation time and work is the best course to pursue for an optimal outcome.