Whether traveling or not, vacations are healthy. However, for many, it can be hard to step away from the desk. In fact, almost half of working Americans don’t use their entire vacation time, despite significant benefits for both work productivity and well-being. Read on to learn why vacations can be a necessary refresh — both personally and professionally — and discover a list of travel experts who will make the “where to go” and “what to plan” aspects of vacation a total breeze.
If nothing else, take a vacation for your health! A solid break has been known to boost your energy reserves while calming your mind. Vacations can also reduce stress and anxiety by removing you from environments that you may associate with these two things. In addition to relieving physical aches and promoting better sleep, easing stress has significant benefits for cardiovascular health. The famous Framingham Heart Study found that men who didn’t take vacations were 30 percent more likely to have heart attacks, and women were 50 percent more likely. These statistics held even after researchers took into account other health factors, including smoking and income. Similarly, in studies conducted in European countries, a correlation has been found between higher life expectancy and vacation time.
Vacations are also good for your career – it’s true! Studies have found that workers who take more vacation time consistently receive better end-of-year performance reviews. In an internal survey, the firm Ernst & Young found that for each additional ten hours of vacation time an employee took, their end-of-year performance improved by eight percent. Perhaps this is because vacations improve productivity — upon return, people are refreshed, re-focused and thus, more efficient. Not to mention that preparing to be out of the office encourages you to improve your workflow and waste less time. In an interview with ABC news, psychologist Francine Lederer said: “most people have better life perspective and are more motivated to achieve their goals after a vacation, even if it is a 24-hour time-out.” The restorative effects of vacations calm and clear the mind, leaving one rejuvenated and better able to think of creative ideas and smart solutions.
Feeling validated and inspired to travel but need some guidance? We’ve rounded up three inspiring travel bloggers that can get you motivated:
From her gorgeous photography on Instagram to her beautifully designed website, Kiersten’s blog has resources organized by trip type, destination, photography and more. High-profile features in publications including Vogue, Travel + Leisure, and The New York Times make her an official authority on the subject.
Jackie’s blog is the ultimate resource for anyone with a mind for thrift. Check out her website to discover a wealth of practical information on everything from getting a passport and travel insurance to scheduling flights and using travel apps. Her guides highlight cheap and free things to do in specific cities, and she even has a resource section that compiles all her tips into a succinct yet comprehensive travel “blueprint.” Want more than visual content? Check out her podcast JUMP with Traveling Jackie.
“Life is short. See the world. Spread Joy.” This advice headlines the Blog Abroad website and sets the tone for the rest of Gloria’s fearless, motivational content. Her funny, engaging voice translates into honest and refreshingly opinionated content that inspires females all over to get out and travel— even if alone!
No matter where you are in your career, make sure to prioritize relaxation and time-off this summer. Your body, mind and spirit will thank you! Need a few more reasons to take a break? Check out additional benefits to taking a break here. Want to know where we’re heading this summer? Follow us!
Piper Anderson is recent graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill.