Why It's Important to Take a You Day
“Pressure pushing down on me. Pushing down on you, no man ask for” - Under Pressure David Bowie & Freddie Mercury
In today’s society, where it is increasingly common to be over-stressed & under pressure, it is beyond important to still remember to take time for you. It can be hard to take a break, deadlines loom and to-do lists escalate. But taking time for yourself is imperative to your overall health and happiness. So here are some top reasons why it’s important to take a “you” day.
1) Stress Wreaks Havoc on Our Physical Health
When you’re stressed, your body produces cortisol, aka the stress hormone, which is designed to prepare us our bodies for fight-or-flight. However, chronic stress leads to an overproduction of cortisol, which can have detrimental effects on our body. Some of these effects being: an increased risk of heart attack, weakened immune systems, higher blood pressure, and increased fertility issues just to name a few. Not taking a day off to allow your mind to unwind or your body to relax, will increase your chances of compromising your physical health.
2) You’ll be More Productive
According to John P. Trougakos, an assistant management professor at the University of Toronto Scarborough and the Rotman School of Management, our mental concentration is very similar to a muscle; in that it can become fatigued. After intense use, such as focusing on a certain task, you need a rest period. This allows your concentration to recover before continuing on or moving onto the next project. “Much as a weight lifter needs rest before doing a second round of repetitions at the gym.” Without these rest periods, you’ll become fatigued, and it will become harder and harder to stay prolific and productive.
3) You’ll Catch Up on Much-Needed Sleep
Sleep deprivation is destructive to your body. Not only does drowsiness increase your risk for accidents (think distracted driving); but long-term sleep deprivation can affect everything from your balance, your memory, to increased risk of depression and anxiety. Taking a day to “catch up” on sleep will greatly reduce your risk of these, and many other potentially harmful effects!
4) You’ll Be Better Prepared.
Taking a day off doesn’t have to mean lounging around in your pj’s and vegging on take-out. It can be productive on a personal level. Tackle your mountain of laundry, tidy your bathroom, prep your meals for the week, etc. Think of how much better you’ll feel once a part of your to-do list is tackled!
Remember that you’re human; an actual person with interests and hobbies. Take some time to remember what they are, and make schedule them into your weekly routine. Your mind and body will thank you for it.