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By Lindsay McMillan

The upcoming public holiday is a day for the beach, barbeque, backyard cricket and of course, no work. However, are workers really relaxing on their day off?

46 per cent of Australian workers believe that with technology they feel like they are “always on” and cannot ever completely shut off from work.

Workers get stuck into bad habits when they should be recharging their batteries. Although most workers make exceptions to answer after work phone calls and emails for urgent matters from time to time, some fall into the habit of making exception after exception.

It can have a devastating impact on our health, our relationships and our quality of life.

These are some of the latest revelations from the a future that works campaign in its most recent report, Workplace Wellbeing which surveyed the views of over 1,000 Australian workers.

85 per cent of workers also reported that they believe employers are responsible for creating an environment that proactively addresses stress in the workplace.

 A further 51 per cent of workers believe unrealistic workload expectations have the greatest negative impact on wellbeing in the workplace

Overseas, countries are putting jurisdictions in place to allow workers to enjoy their down time – in France, the “right to disconnect” is legislated and regulates emails in the off hours.

Although Australia does not have similar regulations yet, it is important for workers’ wellbeing to take undisturbed time off from work.

Our research has found 73 per cent of workers feel stressed in the workplace – we should not be encouraging the old notion of work ‘till you drop’, but find ways to allow real time off. 

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