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Should You Be Taking ‘Micro-Vacations?’

A recent article in Harvard Business Review suggested Americans start foregoing their typical vacations for “micro-vacations,” essentially periodic three-day weekends that can serve to hit the reset button in a softer sense than a full-on vacation.

The piece argues that micro-vacations mean you’re not returning to a clogged inbox, grumbling over the work of an unreliable substitute or burning out.

Those ideas are somewhat valid, but other time-management experts are coming down in endorsement of the traditional vacation. More than half of American workers don’t use their paid vacation days, but some long-term studies have shown that taking a vacation every year reduces risk of death by 20 percent and death by heart disease by 30 percent. (h/t Fast Company)

What’s more, a micro-vacation keeps you more or less in that working mindset. You can have freedom by stepping away from your computer for a day or two, but it’s hard to detach when you know you’ll be heading back into the office in, at the most, three days. You still have to be accountable for your absence and on top of things so you don’t fall behind.

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In any case, however you strategize your time off, studies show that employees who perform best also take the most vacation time. Don’t be a workaholic. It’s better for you and your business if you unplug every now and then.

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