Did you know that half of all American workers do not use all of their allotted vacation time?
Another recent poll by Hotwire.com reported an even larger number of unused vacation days -- more than a week's worth, with older Americans taking even fewer days off.
I realize the fears you may have about putting in a request to take vacation -- time that already belongs to you, at that. Some believe it's just too risky to be off the radar for a week or two in what is an extremely volatile job market. A friend of mine recently remarked that they won't take off right now even with a large amount of time accrued because they don't want to be "out of sight, out of mind" with management.
I understand all that.
There were a few years, Larry and I took no vacation time. Absolutely zero. It was easy to slide into that mode because times were tough and we thought not taking off was the best solution.
It's one of my biggest regrets. If I had it to do over again, I'd lose my job over it if I had to.
I'd take it all even if we never went anywhere and just stayed home and slept.
It's really that important.
If I could write a letter to younger self, I would say this and so much more.