Insights From DVA Technology

Hiring and career news and advice from our experts.

Is Your Work Being Affected by Guilt?


Do you feel guilty about taking breaks at work? According to data from Freshly, 60% of employees surveyed reported feeling guilty about taking breaks while working remotely.

However, a study published in March 2021 by North Carolina State University showed that employees benefit from occasional 5-minute breaks. Breaks redirect blood flow and refresh cognitive functioning. This leads to increased energy and greater odds of setting and achieving work goals.

As a result, you should learn to feel comfortable taking breaks. The following tips can help.

Discover some common reasons for not taking breaks and why disengaging from work is important.

Coworker Perception  

Although almost all employers encourage breaks, most employees do not regularly take breaks. In fact, data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that 83% of respondents to a 2021 survey say they spend no time relaxing during the day. 

The majority of employees know that taking breaks improves productivity. However, many employees are concerned that their coworkers may think they are not getting all their work done. 

You can combat this issue by reminding yourself that you prioritize your tasks and reach your deadlines. Also, what your manager knows about your performance matters more than what your coworkers think of your dedication to your job.

Vacation Shaming

A 2021 Korn Ferry study showed that 56% of respondents canceled, delayed, or cut short vacation plans because of work demands. Also, 61% said they typically check in with the office at least once a day while on vacation. 

This may be because a significant number of employees feel guilty about taking vacations. In many cases, their workload or emails prevent them from being away from the office for an extended time. As a result, employees often feel they will not appear as dedicated as their coworkers if they go on vacation. 

You can resolve any feelings of guilt for going on vacation by reminding yourself that your manager values your productivity. Your productivity increases when you have adequate time away from work. Because you have less time to complete your tasks, you tend to get more done.

Missing Promotions

Many employees feel that taking breaks will make them fall behind in their work. They also might appear to be less dedicated and successful than their colleagues. As a result, employees may feel pressured into not taking breaks, so they are considered for advancement opportunities within the organization. 

In reality, continuously working without breaks leads to overwhelm and burnout. These results do not lead to promotions. 

Instead of skipping your breaks, remind yourself that you need to disengage from work in order to stay productive. This lets your brain rest. It also stimulates creativity and focus. You come back refreshed and ready to produce.

Is It Time to Find a New IT Job?

Coworker perception, vacation shaming, and fear of missing out on promotions are common reasons employees do not take breaks. Reminding yourself that taking breaks increases creativity and productivity helps resolve feelings of guilt over taking time away.

If it is time to find a new IT job, involve DVA Technology in your search. Contact us today.