The Price We Are Paying for NOT Unplugging From Work

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Luggage from Work, Luggage from Home…

We unpack our luggage from our vacation, why don’t we unpack our luggage form our work?

While reading a local business journal, I nearly fell off my chair.

As most of us in the white-collar world as well as some in the blue-collar world can attest, when you go on vacation there is that ‘you are going to get some work done as well’ mentality present.

Whether it is self-imposed or not, workers are becoming more, let’s say un-relaxed than ever before.

The need to disconnect, recharge and rejuvenate is foreign to many. I like to call the combination Dr. R.

Those who say they only need a few days of here and there to be able to get back into the “full swing of things” I find unconvincing – once you get to know them you almost always find they just have a hard time in seeing Dr. R (a phobia to doctors I presume).


Your Constant Go Has A Price

One game I play with workaholics is to bet them they cannot do absolutely nothing for a minimum of 72 hours.

No TV, no work, no music, no book…

They are allowed a pen and paper…

Granted the average person will be drumming their fingers within the first hour –

And that’s my exactly my point…

We have PROGRAMMED OURSELVES into being busy, and perhaps productive, all the time

But what is unhealthy is WHAT we are NOT doing to recharge our bodies, our brain, our soul…

So what is the cost for this constant on-the-go, need to be working (and not necessarily productive), got to work attitude?

Health officials globally know the affects of constantly working does to the body as well to the brain – and I’ll add to the soul.

It’s a mere $150 billion annually is needed by our employers to assist you — their employees’ — address stress-related illnesses as well as the resulting loss of productivity (Mike Redmond, Indiana Business Journal Vol. 28 No 19 [16-22 July 2007]; Tory Johnson, ABC News).

According to a past president of the College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, when you factor in health care cost for treating stress-related illnesses (which the ABC News article does not), the figure jumps to a whopping $1 TRILLION!

Have I attempted my game on myself?

Yes — and the first 2 times I failed miserably…

However the third time I had so many notes on so many projects that I actually got a lot MORE accomplished than I usually do.

Getting Your Head to Accept The Size of Trillion

Let’s get our heads around those numbers for a moment…

Just how much is a million vs. a billion vs. a trillion? To give the 3 of them something we can put our arms around…

  • one person spending a million dollars at $1,000 an hour for 16 hours a day to buy just about anything their heart so desires would take him or her a little more than two months, or 62.5 days exactly
  • to keep the same spending spree going for a billion dollars, it would take TWO people 31,250 days to spend all that money – to put that in years: it would take TWO people 85-1/2 years to spend all that money
  • And a trillion? Well that would take 2,281 people 75 years to spend all that money… Makes you wonder what THEY would do for a vacation now doesn’t it?

Let’s make a table for an easier view, in all cases $1000/hour per 16-hour day is the rate of spending…

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How much to spend # people needed days needed
$1,000,000 1 62.5 days
$1,000,000,000 2 31,250 (86.3 yrs)
$1,000,000,000,000 2,281 27,393 (75 yrs)

Or to put a trillion in another perspective,

if you opened a business in the year zero A.D., and

operated at a loss of $1 million EVERY DAY, then

you have STILL more than 700 years to go BEFORE you have gone through one trillion dollars…

And our government is more than $200 TRILLION in debt…

Back to Your Vacation — and Your Health

So with that in mind – are employers really doing any of their employees any favors by allowing them, or in other cases forcing them (indirectly or directly), to work on their vacation?

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to answer that one…

Given the figure the College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine states, seems the best means to a national healthcare is a vacation WITHOUT any work…

Kronos released this video a while ago (2010) but the message is the same today as it was then…

The video provides a breakdown of other factors and history to our work week

(Note: this video references email a lot as Social media was just taking off when this video was produced, times have changed FAST!)…

Here are some other articles of interest…

Let us know what’s happening with you — especially if you are tired from working ALL the time and/or have made changes in priorities. Let everyone else know what you discovered in the comments section below!

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Garrett O'Brien

CEO, Chairman, Publisher, Editor at The HRIS World Research Group

Garrett is the publisher, editor, writer forThe HRIS World Research Group, which includes The HRIS World, The HRIS World Research, The HRIS World Jobs, The HRIS World News, and The HRIS World Videos

With more than 20 years in roles as a client executive sponsor (#thwCES), project manager as well as functional / technical lead, Garrett is sought for his expertise for project insights, thought leadership, and team management globally.

He has been involved in large-scale and complex implementations since 1991 and has recently moved his operations to be with his wife in Brazil.

Garrett has had the pleasure of working with some of the greatest talents in the industry, and constantly shares his experiences and knowledge through content and webinars.

He maintains his fluency in Portuguese, German, French, and English with his various endeavors and contacts..

When not working, you will have to be adventurous to stay up with him as Garrett loves motorcycling, gunnery, boating, sailing, flying, and sports fishing -- and accompanying his wife on her various likes

About The HRIS World Research Group

The HRIS World blog, which is read by more than 50,000 from more than 160 countries monthly, manages to have more than 550,000 pages viewed monthly. 40%+ of the audience are decision-makers in their organization (and about half of that being C-levels!).

As CEO for CGServices USA Inc, he focuses on multi-provider, multi-line implementations consultation for HRIS systems

Council and Education Member of Gerson Lehrman Group Council, helping institutions of the world leaders meet, engage and manage experts across a wide range of sectors and disciplines.

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