Did you know that the average office chair with wheels travels 12.5 km every year? If you’re suddenly feeling like your chair is travelling further than you, you may be experiencing vacation deprivation. In fact, with Australians now spending more hours at work, there are also more reasons to take a vacation! Find out how to recognise the need for time out, how regular escapes can boost future wellbeing, and – most importantly – how you can get away more regularly.
Signs you need a break
A recent survey showed that around 91 per cent of employees daydream during meetings when they need time out. Perhaps not surprising! Whether you fit into the estimated average of the office worker who sends 40 emails a day, a teacher who marks 60 exam papers a day, or a baker who makes 200 loaves a day – well, let’s just say those roving workplace thoughts might be posting us a message.
There are also plenty of other classic signs you need a break. These include feeling tired (is it only 3pm?), headaches (no joke), sick days off (set the controls for email divert), and changes in appetite. All of this adds up to plenty of reasons to take a holiday. Perhaps this is why Finland’s Prime Minister recently suggested a four-day working week for the entire country?
Benefits of a break
Whether it’s a relaxing cruise down the Murray River, stargazing in Western Australia, or wine tasting on the Limestone Coast – research shows that the positive effects of taking a break last way longer than your getaway plans. In fact, they can boost productivity, stimulate creativity and promote wellbeing by as much as 40 per cent.
This is backed up by the fact that taking a break reduces the likelihood of sick leave by 28 per cent. And, in more good news for employers, a decent break boosts job productivity by enhancing that creativity and mental health – meaning that your planned country road trip is good news for everyone!
Making the most of annual leave
Easier said than done, you might be thinking. Well, there’s more good news. Even micro breaks such as an extra-long weekend or mid-week break can provide effective opportunities to recharge. And there are also some handy tricks you can use to make the most of your annual leave.
Most full-time workers in Australia receive four weeks of paid annual leave a year. By combining this leave with public holidays, you can potentially extend your scheduled leave by over 50 days throughout the year. We’ve already done the math for you – all you need to do is work out where you want to spend your time off.
Getaway to nature
Here’s another interesting fact for your next dinner party – it’s been documented that the colour green makes people more creative. Not surprisingly, nature is filled with all the greens you need to recharge and reconnect. From coastal cruises to world-class hiking – wellbeing really is at your fingertips. So, as our final tip, here are some ideas to inspire and get you started.
- Home to the famous Great Barrier Reef, Cairns in Queensland delivers unparalleled opportunities for a midweek break with diving and snorkelling, with tours that teach you to dive, as well as snorkelling cruises
- Victoria’s incredible wilderness and history will transport you completely. From incredibly preserved gold rush towns to iconic steam train rides through forests of Mountain Ash
- Tasmania is one of the world’s most spectacular walking destinations, with invigorating coastal strolls to hikes through ancient rainforests, canyons and alpine heights.
- Rekindle romance in South Australia’s heritage town of Hahndorf, nestled in the beautiful Adelaide Hills. Established in 1839 by German settlers, sip in the town’s historic ambience at one of the restaurants, bars or vineyards.
- Enjoy a family getaway in beautiful Canberra. There are plenty of great reasons to take a break in Australia’s capital, from the surrounding natural attractions to national galleries and tours through iconic buildings such as Parliament House