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The Source: Why You Don't Take Vacation



View image | gettyimages.com

It is well documented that workers in the United States work longer hours, take less vacation time, and retire later than nearly every industrialized nation. The U.S. is the only country not to make companies offer vacation time. 

The ideology of work and the protestant work ethic puts the  job on a pedestal, paired with an economic downturn that has employees worried about the next paycheck makes for a perfect storm of self-neglect.

There are real mental and physical ramifications from not having downtime. In one study, women who didn't vacation annually, but once every six years, were eight times more likely to have coronary issues. Men were 30 percent more likely under the same circumstances.

Even though half of US workers who have paid vacation will leave it unused, those that are taking it are increasingly working during it.  According a RAND study done late last year, 60 percent of US workers are working during our vacation.

RAND Economist, Katherine Carman made the observation in a RAND blogpost that was published Monday. The post ran Her data showed that Male, college-educated Republicans were the most likely segment of society to work while on vacation. The post was so popular that Carman admitted she was forced to take calls the day it went live while on vacation in Disneyland.


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Paul Flahive can be reached at Paul@tpr.org and on Twitter at @paulflahive