Globally the Irish have one of the best attitudes to holiday and are reaping the benefits.
Many of us are dreaming of far-away places: a palm-tree-lined beach, a sunrise over snow-covered mountains, or the beatiful Irish countryside.
However, while we may all daydream of taking off to an exotic destination, there are a few of us that don’t. In fact some of us don’t take proper holidays at all. Fearing that taking too long of a break (the 2/3 weeks kind) will be frowned upon – regardless of our allotted holiday allowance.
Well science now tells us that not taking your allocated days off is a very bad idea. Increasingly, studies are showing that breaks of any kind are not only good for you; they can actually increase productivity and well-being.
If your work depends on being sharp, creative, and industrious, here’s to losing the guilt. As you consider how much time to take off this summer, remember why breaks exist, and that is to rejuvenate and replenish ourselves. We all need to get away for both physical and mental well being. Here are 3 good reasons why science says Take A Break!
When you’re really in the groove of a task or project, the ideas are flowing and you feel great. But it doesn’t last forever- stretch yourself just a bit beyond that productivity zone and you might feel unfocused, zoned out or even irritable. Basically, the human brain just wasn’t built for the extended focus we ask of it these days. Our brains are vigilant all the time because they evolved to detect tons of different changes to ensure our very survival. So focusing so hard on one thing for a long time isn’t something we’re ever going to be great at (at least not for a few centuries).
A simple change in perspective is what you need. Eating different food, hearing different languages, or just changing the rhythm of your day, but getting away from home makes you see the world through a different lens.
Numerous studies have shown that never taking time off can set off a wide range of issues, from health problems to burnout. Employee holidays have a precise ending; physical and mental health problems do not.
Whether or not we take full advantage of our holidays – we can acknowledge that holidays are an important way for people to relax and recharge their batteries. For working families with children holidays are vital not only as a treat for the children but to spend some quality time together. Children grow so fast you don’t want to miss out on seeing them grow. They will also appreciate the lower stress and higher rest levels!
With the amount of stress most of us carry in our everyday lives, we must cultivate resiliency.
Holidays give you the chance to catch up on some much needed sleep. You can lie-in in the mornings (as long as you don’t miss the breakfast buffet!) and then who isn’t guilty of unintentionally falling asleep and having an impromptu afternoon nap on a sun lounger? And what’s more, being in a relaxed, holiday frame of mind means that you will sleep better too. Getting enough sleep will improve your mental performance, help prevent premature ageing and can prevent illness by strengthening your immune system.
Sleep isn’t the only thing that can strengthen your immune system; vitamin D does too and you’ll get plenty of vitamin D from being in the sunshine – just make sure you wear sun cream!
Joe Robbins is co-founder of CareerWise Recruitment. A graduate of the University of Limerick (Degree in Business Studies, 1985), Joe worked in the UK for five years where he specialised in materials management, production management and plant management for a number of companies.
He returned to Ireland in 1992 to become Operations Manager for a Cork-based start-up, FMC Automotive Division which was subsequently taken over by Snap-on Equipment. Joe managed the business re-location of this company to Shannon in 1997 before setting up CareerWise Recruitment in 1999.
He is a committee member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) Mid-West region, and a former Director and Vice President of the Shannon Chamber of Commerce. Joe is former Chairperson of the Sixmilebridge Camogie Club and current Chairperson of the Clare County Camogie Board.
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