Holidays make you happy and healthy

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Study confirms positive holiday effects on health

Vacation has a positive effect on personal happiness, which continues some time after the well-deserved vacation and is significantly more pronounced than, for example, when shopping or purchasing material consumer goods with approximately the same value, and organizational psychologist Dr. Jessica de Bloom.

Over a five-year period, Jessica de Bloom at Radboud University Nijmegen had researched the effects of vacation on the health and well-being of workers. In 2012 she published her results in the popular science book “De kunst van het vakantievieren”. As part of the International Tourism Exchange (ITB) in Berlin, Dr. Jessica de Bloom will give a lecture on June 6th, “How exactly individual tourist groups recover and how long the recovery lasts.”

Vacation makes you happier than material consumer goods According to the German-born health, work and organizational psychologist, a new laptop, a new luxury handbag, an expensive wristwatch or a new television has a significantly smaller effect on the individual happiness of employees than a vacation that costs about the same. The expert working at the University of Tampere in Finland today cites, for example, the lack of comparability as the reason for the superior effect of (short) holidays on the feeling of happiness. "Unlike the designer suit or the expensive wristwatch, it is difficult to contrast your diving holiday on the Red Sea with your colleague's trip to Barcelona," said de Bloom in the announcement of her lecture tomorrow.

Vacation with a positive effect on health The psychologist explained that, according to the latest research, people who spend their money on experiences such as going to a concert, going on a family trip or taking a short vacation are happier in the short and long term than people who do material things, like jewelry, clothing or electronic devices. Overall, vacation contributes to health and provides relaxation from stressful everyday life. According to the latest ITB press release, the positive effect on health was also confirmed as part of the Framingham Heart Study. This came to the conclusion that "people who did not go on vacation for a long time were at greater risk of getting sick or even died prematurely than people who took time off regularly."

Especially enjoy the last day of vacation The health psychologist Dr. Jessica de Bloom also said that in terms of relaxation, several short vacations are more advisable than a pronounced annual vacation. Because like sleep, “you can't save relaxation. A long summer vacation is not enough to compensate for a whole year of hard work and overtime. ”Regular short breaks are therefore preferable in terms of health and relaxation. The expert added that the length of the vacation is less important than the “freedom of design”. The activities should meet their own needs and be under the control of the holidaymaker, explained Dr. Jessica de Bloom. The last day of vacation is also crucial for the recovery effect and the individual feeling of happiness after the vacation. The health psychologist therefore advises not to pack your bags and other unpleasant activities on the last day, but rather on the penultimate day of the vacation. So "you can really enjoy the last day of your vacation again." (Fp)

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