Last updated: 10:00 AM ET, Fri August 14 2015

Princess Cruises Study Reveals Americans Stressing More, Relaxing Less

Features & Advice | Princess Cruises | Patrick Clarke | August 14, 2015

Princess Cruises Study Reveals Americans Stressing More, Relaxing Less

It's no secret that Americans are a stressed out bunch. But compounding the problem is a lack of relaxation.

Princess Cruises' sixth annual Relaxation Report reveals that more than half of U.S. adults (54 percent) use their vacation days to handle personal obligations, including doctor's appointments and various errands.

Perhaps even more troubling, the lone thought of relaxation is enough to trigger stress in nearly one-third of survey respondents. What's more, four in 10 (42 percent) Americans often feel guilty about relaxing, while more than one-third (36 percent) said finding time to relax is more difficult than living within their budget. 

The percentages, which are up from 2014's report, highlight a discouraging trend. 

"In the six years that Princess Cruises has commissioned this survey, we've continued to see stress levels rise year after year," said Princess Cruises president Jan Swartz in a statement. "We aren't giving ourselves permission to truly let go and relax, and whether that's because of the demands on our intense lives or our own guilt, this is an unsustainable trend that can have a genuinely adverse impact on our society as a whole."

Surprisingly, half of Americans find planning and taking a vacation to be a stressful experience. Even more shocking, 22 percent are more stressed requesting time off from their employer than requesting a pay raise.

The survey, which polled 1,000 nationally representative U.S. adults ages 18 and up over a seven-day span last month, was conducted by Wakefield Research for Princess Cruises. 

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