Daria’s  Perspective

The Importance of the Day Off

By Daria Campbell

We just celebrated Australia Day. Some of you would have gotten a paid holiday some of you would have had a day off unpaid because you are Casual. Some of you worked (hopefully at a holiday rate!). I understand all three situations because I have experience all of them. What I would like to share with you today is that no matter which category you are in you need to get hold of the idea that holidays are important.

If you have read my articles before you will know I am American and the one thing I will always say is that Australia knows how to give hard working people a break.   Please never take this for granted. I had a job once in NYC that made me work 45 hours a week and because the company only closed on Christmas Day, I never had a break. If my day off (Wednesday) fell on a public holiday, then whoo hoo (ask me how many times that happened?  Once in 2 years) and the owner did not have to pay time and a half for working on a holiday. The only time off we got was 40 hours of sick time which she was “kind” enough to let us use as vacation time if we never got sick. This was only because she had to pay it by law otherwise, we would not have gotten that either.

Then there was the fact that I never had 2 days off in a row and only Sunday on the weekend. Yes, it was nice to be off on a Wednesday when everyone else was working and it did work in my favor when my best friend had a last minute Wednesday matinee ticket to a sold out Broadway Show. But the amount of times I would drag myself into work exhausted was too high to count.

So here I am in Australia now. Back to where people appreciate time off and vacation days. I just want to let you know that even if it is one day off take hold of it and appreciate it. Even if you do nothing but sleep all day it is obvious your body needs the sleep. Do not feel guilty. Do not think “I should not waste the day.” Go ahead and waste it. Own it 100%. You work hard you need to relax just as hard. Your day off is your day off. Your vacation is your vacation go and see what you love or stay home and enjoy your own home. It is up to you! Then come back to work refreshed and ready to get down to business! It truly is a wonderful thing the Day Off, do not take it for granted.