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Vacation, staycation, it doesn't matter. You need time off, because the consequences of not taking a vacation can be serious.
Without a break from your daily responsibilities, you could end up feeling bummed out, burned out and stressed out, which can make you more susceptible to illness. You also have a higher likelihood of marital conflict and alienation from your kids, says Peter Fraenkel, Ph.D., director of the Center for Work and Family at the Ackerman Institute for the Family in New York. Feeling overworked and constantly stressed out can actually lead to depression, anxiety, insomnia, irritability and lack of energy or excitement, according to Dr. Fraenkel.
Here's what happens: Work-related challenges, complaints and crises trigger our fight or flight response, explains Dr. Fraenkel. To counteract that heightened state, we need a timeout so our bodies can calm down. But too often we don't take one, so we?re operating in a continuous state of stress.
Our 24/7 world compounds the stress cascade. We are connected to our workplaces in a manner unheard of 20 years ago, through cell phones and mobile computers, he says. The work is always there, and your access is always there, and it's become harder and harder for individuals to protect themselves from being overworked. Even if you love your job, you need downtime to make sure you don't get burnt out from an overloaded schedule.