But “GVS” affects every worker, not just Millennials – does it affect you?
What is GVS?
Guilty Vacation Syndrome, or GVS, now affects a growing percentage of the American population. GVS is the nagging urge to cancel or delay vacation, due to guilt. With vacation-shaming growing in offices across the world, there has been a surge in diagnoses of GVS. Many feel that despite wanting a vacation, they shouldn’t take one.
In fact, findings from the 2016 Alamo Family Vacation Survey show 59 percent of Millennials reported feeling a sense of shame for taking or planning a vacation, while 41 percent those 35 or older felt those same symptoms of GVS. Nearly half (47 percent) of all workers surveyed said they felt a sense of shame or guilt at their workplace for taking time off to go on a vacation. What’s more, two-fifths (42 percent) of those think their co-workers are seriously shaming them – not just joking. And nearly half (47 percent) said they’ve felt the need to justify to their employer why they’re using their vacation days. Of those who reported having unused paid vacation days, two-fifths (40 percent) said they left five or more vacation days unused in 2015! A full week of work left on the table simply because workers do not want to deal with the guilt associated with taking a vacation.
Recent research from Project: Time Off shows that an astounding fifty-five percent of Americans didn’t use all of their time off in 2015 and sixty-five percent say that their company discourages, sends mixed messages, or says nothing about taking personal time off.
Are You at Risk?
It’s clear that everyone is at risk for contracting GVS. Americans are already more likely than any of our counterparts around the world to leave vacation time on the table and may go years without ever taking that break to rejuvenate and reenergize.
The symptoms often go undetected or are mistaken for other, less serious ailments.
• Misplaced emotions
Treatment and Care
There are many success stories out there, so there is definitely hope! People are learning to embrace vacation—with no second-guessing, stress or guilt.
Proven remedies for GVS include:
• Realize that vacations are a necessity and not a luxury;
• Commit to an annual vacation—a recipe for stronger ties with families and friends, less stress and better health;
• Learn from those that have never suffered from this malady; timeshare owners have continued to make vacations a priority.
It’s proven that one to two weeks away from the daily routine leads to better job performance and productivity—perhaps helping to make your job even more secure when you return to it.