I am not good at taking breaks from work – on a given day or in a vacation sense; not even in a ‘staycation’ sense. I truly don’t remember a day in the last two years when I didn’t work. (This is not to say that I don’t have ‘light’ days, of course). But I found this short article interesting and will incorporate more of this into my weekly routine.

(I received this email, to give credit where credit is due, from Josh Dalglish over at Academy Mortgage (super fast plug for Josh: great mortgage guy: 503-998-4016), in Wilsonville.)

Researchers at UCLA’s Anderson School of Management reviewed data from more than 200,000 Americans and found that folks who took more vacation days reported being happier—no big surprise there! More good vibes, fewer bad vibes, and life satisfaction was higher. But what if you can’t take vacation days? Get your vacation vibes by treating the weekend—or even part of it—like a vacation.

Studies reported that when people were nudged to treat a weekend as a vacation, they returned to work on Monday happier than the control group that spent their weekend doing the same-old same-old. Experiments show that the key is not what activities you do, but spending the weekend being more present and mindful in what you do—fishing, folding the laundry, hiking, tending the kids, whatever!

“Rather than any changes in one’s activities, it was . . . minding of the present moment throughout the weekend that increased enjoyment . . . and produced greater happiness when back at work,” said researchers. You don’t have to spend a lot or do any special activities. Just take that mental break that allows you to become more fully present and engaged in your time off, making that time more enjoyable.

Robert here again: give it a shot! The worst thing that could happen would be your laundry gets folded the same way that it always has. But, in the meantime, you may discover something new… a way to make yourself feel better (and maybe get some chores done less begrudgingly!)

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Happy is as Happy Does.