Take a vacation with your friends/family, you overworked dipshit

Take Time For Vacations

Americans love to think of themselves as busy workaholics — even though, give or take, they do about 590 hours of actual work per year — and as a result, they can’t sacrifice time for vacations; they annually leave about 430 million days on the table. ( ** Puts rifle to scrotum ** ) The biggest reason is thinking it will hurt you professionally. Here’s my rebuttal there: if you work at a place where departing for 1-2 weeks to recharge and have fun with family and friends is going to hurt your ability to get promoted, f’n get a new job.

Turns out this reluctance to head for vacation is hurting your overall well-being too. 

Per Gallup:

Americans Should Take More Vacations

This is all part of the Well-Being Index. 148K Americans were polled from January to November; factors about their life were then sliced and diced along this continuum of Well-Being. A number close to 100 is better.

So look at that chart above: if you make less than $24K a year, but you make time for vacation with family/friends, you have about a 66.3 Well-Being score. If you make more than $120K a year (about five times more money, then) but you don’t make time for vacation, you have a 55.1 Well-Being score.

In short: you can be poor, but make time for people and loved ones, and you’ll be better off than being rich and never leaving your bubble.

Remember: shift away from money, and towards time. That’s the secret to happiness — er, to contentment.

I know you think you’re busy and overworked and OMG there is no time and JESUS I CAN’T EVEN TAKE THE TIME TO RESPECT MY EMPLOYEES, but this chart above — and yes, you can argue with the data, just like you can argue with anything — is a pretty simple reminder that if you want to be happier, to be more content, to have a stronger sense of well-being, frankly if you want any of it, take some time to rest, relax and recharge with your friends. It’s not that complicated.

Here’s some great additional info courtesy of FindMyShift.

Ted Bauer


  1. I think the reluctance to take full advantage of PTO has more to do with a workplace culture of fear than workers’ supposed inherent dutifulness. Higher levels of worker mobility don’t help if the pool of tolerable jobs is so low (that’s a diplomatic way of saying that most jobs suck).

    It’s easy to just say “get another f’n job,” but it’s quite another to actually accomplish a successful transition when the odds are so stacked against the average worker. If it were so easy to just leave, most service jobs would not exist, for example.

    Since so many people try to manage their perception instead of actually doing work, it makes sense that taking PTO would diminish a carefully cultivated ethos that projects “hard-working yes man/woman.” Nowadays, taking PTO also conveys a sense of individuality and independence which is discouraged in our modern day groupthink milieu.

    • On this one, I think I misspoke a little bit. I actually just came off about a year or so without a job — so I know how hard it can be, and how the deck is stacked against a conventional American worker. I didn’t mean to be flippant to say “get a new f’n job.” I actually meant to imply, “Well, you’re probably working at a place with misguided attitudes.” You may still need to work there. Heck, I’ve worked at a bunch of places with misguided attitudes, and I’ve stayed there because I need a paycheck. It’s that simple.

      My overall idea is that the things that give us pleasure in life are pretty basic, you know? And yet we focus on all these OTHER things … and I think maybe that’s misguided.

      • I knew what you meant. I have the same attitude…and there are so many places with misguided attitudes!

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