Work to live
“By working faithfully eight hours a day you may eventually get to be boss and work twelve hours a day.” - Robert Frost
For a while, finding a job has been at the top of my priority list. I’ve managed to snag a few, but I am still on the search for that real 9 to 5 that includes benefits and paid time off. This leads me to my topic…
To me, that sounds like, "Go and have fun. We will still pay you as if you were here when you are really out enjoying *insert dream location here*.” It’s hard for me to believe that such a scenario exists. The simple fact that people didn't take up the offer baffles me, even if it was just for a mini getaway. I do understand that those days can turn into a bonus if they are not taken, but with some jobs if you don’t use them you lose them.
It doesn’t help that I have a critical case of wanderlust and follow a lot of travel bloggers and photographers on social media. Each day all I do is double tap the photos and wish I could be there. Just the other day I read about a couple that quit their corporate jobs and decided to take an extended honeymoon traveling the world for TWO YEARS. They call it “honeymooning indefinitely.” That sounds so bold and very life changing.
While I was studying abroad in Costa Rica, it stood out to me that AMERICANS LIVE TO WORK, NOT WORK TO LIVE. My host mom expressed this to me at the dinner table, I heard this in my Spanish classes, I heard this everywhere I went when we were discussing different cultural differences. Throughout my time traveling in the country, I would meet people from Central and South America, Canada, Australia, and different European countries who were on vacation, however, I rarely met anyone from the U.S. and I found that interesting. To other people it’s nothing to go backpacking throughout Central America, island hop in the Caribbean, or hike the highest mountains without a bit of Wifi to check emails. Honestly, it took a while for me to get used to not always having Wifi.
Sometimes we often get caught up in our jobs/careers we lose ourselves. There is nothing wrong with taking a little break and regrouping. While I was abroad, my professors made sure not to assign homework during the weekend so that we could actually enjoy our time there. It’s safe to say the heavy workload during the week helped balance things out. I was truly immersed in the language and culture by the time that I left.
Now that I am entering into the adult world, I don’t want to fall into the mindset of living to work. Yes, money is a necessity to survive and pay bills and such, that’s not my point. My point is that everyone needs a break from time to time. Some people value their jobs to the point that it becomes their whole life. I know one person who has accumulated nearly three years in vacation days. The last time this person has been on vacation was 1998. As for me, that is something that I am not trying to do.
Come on guys it’s so much out there to see. You can make it a girls trip or even a couples trip to split up the costs.
(Check out my article on fun girls trips here)
On the other hand, sometimes adult things pop up and it’s hard for you and your buddies to set aside times. Traveling by your lonesome isn’t so bad. Eventually, I just might have to put on my big girl pants again and do it. Each time I've traveled alone it was a fun adventure although I’ve only done it three times to New York City, San Antonio, TX, and San Diego, CA.
(Check out my article on Traveling Internationally as a Single Woman)
Traveling allows you to step outside of you comfort zone and can force you to reconsider your way of thinking. If you are traveling outside of the U.S. and into a country that is not as developed, you become more appreciative of the things you had the opportunity to work hard for.
God didn’t create all this natural and manmade beauty for us not to experience it. I never would have thought that I would bungee jump in the mountains in Costa Rica and get one of the BEST massages all in the same weekend. Let’s get out there and get those passport stamps up and see the Egyptian Pyramids, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, the Eiffel Tower, or even the Grand Canyon here in the good ole U.S. of A!
A few other interesting finds:
• Women took fewer vacation days than men.
• Younger workers tended to use fewer vacation days.
• People living in the suburbs took more vacation days.
• People in the West took more vacation days than those in other regions.
• Workers with higher incomes took more vacation.
• 15 percent of Americans took more than 20 vacation days.
• Travel Habits of Americans: Only 13 Percent Traveled Abroad for Holidays in Last Year
• Travel Habits of Americans: Almost Half Didn’t Take a Single Day Off This Summer
• Travel Habits of Americans: 63% of Adult Americans Have Not Traveled in Last Year
• Travel Habits of Americans: Only 10 Percent of Americans Travel Frequently For Business
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