Slowing Down in a Fast-Paced World

We work with a lot of people who want more time. They tell us they need more time, that there are never enough hours in the day to get everything done. They feel constantly overwhelmed and are trying to live their lives with a focus on what matters most. It’s a constant struggle for many of us. The truth is: slowing down in a fast-paced world is hard. Our new book Retreat to Success is all about this topic. It’s a story about taking the time to slow down and find your life’s purpose. 

I read this article recently in USA Today about how difficult it can be for Americans to take vacation. The article says that “Not taking all the vacation time that’s available has become an American trait.” A 2010 global survey taken of more than 12,500 workers by Ipsos Public Affairs and Reuters discovered that only 57% of Americans used all their vacation time. There are many reasons cited for this reality, including a fear of unemployment in a difficult economy, a feeling of having too much work to take time off, and not wanting to deal with a backlog of work upon returning from vacation. Regardless of the reasons, vacation is necessary. We need to take time off to be with those who matter to us, to rest, to think, to have fun, to do the things that make us happy. After all, as John Wanamaker said, “those who do not make time for relaxation are obliged sooner or later to find time for illness.” 

How do you feel about this issue? Are you on the list of people who have unused vacation time every year or do you make sure to utilize your time off? What are the challenges you find with taking time off? What advice would you give to someone who hasn’t taken a vacation in years?

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