AP NEWS

Vacation Afterglow

September 5, 2018

You know that unmistakable vacation after-glow? Fond memories of drinks by the beach, or enjoying breathtaking views of some other paradise?

Well, a new survey says it takes just a couple of days back at the old grind to grind away those stress-free moments -- that’s according to two-thirds of more than 1,500 U.S. workers polled on behalf of the American Psychological Association (APA).

The “2018 Work and Well-Being Survey” carried out by The Harris Poll, noted that 24% of those quizzed say their stress returned the very day they returned to work, while four in 10 were able to hold on to those vacation vibes for a couple of days at least.

David W. Ballard, the head of the APA’s Center for Organizational Excellence, boiled down the findings in a statement. “People need time off from work to recover from stress and prevent burnout, but employers shouldn’t rely on the occasional vacation to offset a stressful work environment.”

So, in short, it’s your boss’ fault.

“Unless they address the organizational factors causing stress and promote ongoing stress management efforts, the benefits of time off can be fleeting,” Ballard noted. “When stress levels spike again shortly after employees return to work, that’s bad for workers and for business. Employers can do better.”

The survey also revealed that around two-thirds of those polled agreed that vacations sap their stress while boosting their energy and productivity when they do return to work -- though around one in five get stressed while ON vacation.

More than 28% of those polled say they do more work on vacation than they planned, and 42% dread returning to work. Not surprisingly, considering the latter: just 41% say they’re encouraged by their employers to take time off.

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