There are plenty of good reasons to take a vacation, whether you’re eager to catch up on beach reads with a drink in hand or just want to take a much-needed break from the office. In fact, about 55 percent of Malaysians are leaving some or all of their vacation time unused.
10 Best Reasons to Take a Vacation
That’s right. More than half of us our leaving free time off on the table. And that means we’re missing choice opportunities to become happier, healthier, and all-around more productive, because, as it turns out, vacations are good for you. Really good for you.
Just read on to see why putting aside your workaholic tendencies—even if just for a moment—is in your best interest.
Approximately one in three adults in Malaysia has high blood pressure, putting them at risk for chronic disease, strokes, and heart attacks. The good news? Taking a vacation could be the cure. Research published in Psychosomatic Medicine reveals that individuals who spent more time enjoying leisure activities, like vacations, had reduced cortisol levels. High cortisol is linked to increased blood pressure, so if you want to keep your numbers in a healthy range, it’s high time you start scoping out hotels.
As your blood pressure drops, so does your risk of heart attack. Fortunately, taking a vacation can have a profound effect on your cardiovascular health, lowering your cortisol levels, blood pressure, and your heart attack risk in one fell swoop.
Want to lose those last 10 kgs? Try taking a vacation. Having high cortisol levels increases your risk of unintended weight gain, but a relaxing trip can have those numbers dropping in no time.
If you’re feeling stressed out, there’s virtually no better medicine than a vacation. In addition to reducing the psychological stress of the daily grind, taking a vacation can reduce stress-related cortisol surges, breaking you out of the cortisol and stress cycle for good.
Staying healthy could be as easy as using your vacation days. Researchers at Penn State found a link between leisure activities, like travel, and increased overall health in later life, so start racking up those frequent flier miles now.
That ever-expanding waistline could be stopped with few days of sun and sand. Vacationing reduces cortisol levels, which are linked to weight gain, specifically in the abdominal region. Take a few days off, lower your cortisol levels, and you’ll be back in your skinny jeans before you know it.
Seeing the same four walls day in and day out is enough to make anyone feel more than a little stifled. Fortunately, all it takes is some vacation time to tap that font of creativity living within you. If you can go abroad, all the better: Researchers at Northwestern University have linked international travel with increased creativity. Few great artists have found themselves inspired by a cubicle in the suburbs, after all. And for more ways to boost your out-of-the-box thinking, learn the 6 Surefire Ways to Become A Creative Genius.
After college, opportunities to make new friends often seem few and far between. Luckily, traveling can open you up to a much wider social circle than the one you have available to you at home, affording you lasting friendships along the way.
Finding yourself in a less-than-pleasant mood after a long work week is hardly unheard of. If you want to reduce your stress and return to the office with a smile, consider taking a vacation. In fact, a study published in Applied Research in Quality of Life reveals that just booking a vacation to look forward to significantly increased study participants’ happiness.
If you want to get your work done faster and more effectively, you should definitely take those vacation days. Multiple studies suggest that participating in leisure activities can increase workplace productivity, and anecdotally, a few days on the beach is a surefire cure for office burnout. And for more ways to make the most of every day, check out the 15 Ways to Double Your Productivity.