A poll conducted by the airline JetBlue and several large hotel chains shows nearly 57% of Americans don’t use all of their earned vacation time from work. University of Iowa Leisure Studies professor David Gould says people who haven’t lost their jobs are taking on more responsibility.
“As we’ve downsized, we’re now absorbing other people’s jobs. So it becomes a lot more difficult for people to get away and be able to take time off,” Gould says. And even when people do take vacation, Gould says most find it hard to “disconnect” as they continue to answer work-related emails.
Gould says smart employers want their employees to use their earned vacation hours. “Would you buy an expensive piece of machinery and run it (non-stop)? No. You’d realize you’ll burn it out, something will go wrong and mistakes will be made,” Gould says.
Even a short weekend away from work can prove helpful. And Gould asks, what’s the point of a daily grind if you can’t enjoy the fruits of your labor? “Your family, the community and the type of things that make life really rich and worthwhile…certainly, work can fulfill some of those things, but it doesn’t make up for the others,” Gould says.
By Jillian Petrus, KCRG-TV, Cedar Rapids