Vacation - The Preferred Drug of Working Folks...

I have been blessed to working at my job for over 7 years now.  I have worked with a few different companies that have very different vacation plans and policies.  This is by far one of the most beneficial plans I have been a part of (I won't go into details, but I get over 2 days a vacation a month, with another bump at 15 years).  Basically I can have a week of vacation time in no time if I so choose.  And it takes a lot for us to reach the max, approximately 3 months of vacation.  It doesn't evaporate, we don't have to use it within a certain time frame, this is just GREAT!

My problem, with this plan, is that it is what I like to call an "enabler".  Sure I can take a Friday or a Monday off, for a nice long weekend.  I may even take a few days off before a holiday for an almost longer break.  But I will admit, I have become very comfortable with the fact of taking a week off here and there, and then coming back and looking forward to the next planned "out" from work.

Hopefully you can see where I'm going with this, but if not, let me break it down for you. Ya see, when you're not at work, especially if you have a high stress job or work with high maintenance people, you look forward to getting away for a few days in a row, you get a "high" from not having to deal with the issues that plague you "Monday through Friday, 8 - 5", so to speak. But eventually, you will have to return to work, in order to get paid and begin to accumulate more vacation days. Have you ever said to yourself "Man sometimes it's more work to take a few days off than it's really even worth..."? I know I have. All the prep-work you do to make sure all your projects are completed in a timely fashion and all the emails you have to read after being out of the office for a few days, it's a lot of work! You get so tired and drained within a few days of coming back that you yearn to be back on vacation.

With all this, I say that taking a vacation is similar to the effects of drug; Think about it... Generally (not all, some) use a drug and get high, then they sober up and come down, a little bit "lower" than they were before they started using the drug. At first, they use very sporadically. Then they find themselves using again and again, trying to reach that original high, to the point that they "need" the drug just to get back to an "ordinary" state. Vacation is the same way - You start off with one day during the week, then you go to a long weekend, before you know it you want a whole week off. Only to feel a little bit more down when you return to work.

Now, sure, there are things that can be done to alleviate this feeling of constant need of reaching that "high" of not having to be at work:

Retire, but if you are under a certain age, or you haven't "put in your 30" then that just doesn't make sense...

Win the lottery, the chances of that are about as good as George W winning a Rhodes Scholar award.

Call in Sick, a lot, ok, don't do this, because when your dumb butt gets fired you're gonna ask me to borrow money, and I don't have it...

Suck it up and deal with it, this is what most of the normal working citizens are doing right now, you really are no different. Keep on counting down until your next vacation, when you can retire, or Friday night when you can play the numbers again.

Now, if you will excuse me, I need to go record my "Out of Office" message for all my co-workers...

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