Workers in the UK Aren’t Using All Their Annual Leave

Hotel group ‘Jurys Inn’ asked 1000 employees across the UK about how much holiday they have left to use before the start of this year. They asked employees if they were planning on using their remaining holiday, and if so, what they were planning on using the holiday on. 

The results were startling. Jurys Inn found that a staggering third of their UK employees still had 10 days of annual leave to use before 2018 came and that the average UK worker had 6 days of holiday remaining. If the same thing happens this year, 134 million holiday days will be wasted. 

Why Are People Not Using Their Holiday?

When asked, 34% of people said that they hadn’t used their holiday days because they weren’t sure how to use them. A further 22% said that they were simply too busy to organise anything. 1 in 10 employees believe that taking time off isn’t appealing because they were concerned that they wouldn’t be able to find someone to cover their work while they were away, and so they would be returning to twice their workload. Another 11% said that they didn’t have enough money left to spend on a trip away, whilst some said that they had deliberately saved holiday days to book something exciting – only to realise come November there are no holiday options that appeal to them. 

So What Should We Do?

This study therefore illustrates to us that people simply didn’t take enough holiday. So, if you’re one of those people that don’t take time off and build up your holiday days – maybe now is the time to take a well-deserved break. Many people regret not using their holiday earlier in the year, especially when they get to the end of the year and have so much remaining holiday left.  

Why Should We Take Time Off?

Holiday time is a great opportunity for you to have a well-deserved pause from your workplace environment. A break allows you to rest your mind, brain and soul, and it’s a great opportunity to come back to your desk motivated, ready and dedicated with a new mind-set. Below, we’ve listed a few reasons why it’s vital that you take time off from work.

Improved Mental and Physical Health

In today’s society, mental health problems are on the increase as people become stressed, overworked and unhappy. Therefore, you need to ensure that you take time off and put your own health first. Your health and happiness are vital to everything you do and so, taking time off in order to increase your happiness and motivation is vital to your workplace efficiency. You can find out more about this here.

Breaks Make You More Productive

Sabine Sonnentag, professor of organisational psychology at the University of Mannheim in Germany finds that the inability to detach from work comes with symptoms of burnout, which impacts well being and productivity. She found that disengaging from work when you are not at work makes us more resilient in the face of stress and more productive and engaged when we are at work. Even a short weekend getaway can provide significant work-stress recovery while longer trips away provide even more relief. After time off, 64% of people say that they are refreshed and excited to get back to work. 

A Change of Pace Boosts Creativity

In today’s society, creativity is one of the most important traits for all incoming employees. Researcher Kyung Hee Kim, author of the creativity challenge, has shown that we are facing a dramatic creativity crisis, with creativity scores dropping significantly in younger generations. Here again, more time off will help. Doing something different seriously boosts your creativity. For example, one study showed that hiking in nature and disconnecting from responsibilities showed a 50% spike in creativity. Brain imaging studies also showed that doing nothing, being idle and daydreaming also create alpha waves in the brain, which are key for creative insights. 

Therefore, it is absolutely vital that you make time and take time off! There really is no excuse for not treating yourself, which will allow you to relax, stay healthy, boost creativity and productivity and let you come back to work with a refreshed attitude, excited to get back to work. 

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