By Victoria McNally // SWNS
NEWS COPY w/ VIDEO + INFOGRAPHIC
Three out of every five Americans would rather get an extra vacation day for “life admin” tasks than a pay raise, according to new research.
In a recent poll of 2,000 U.S. adults, 57% preferred the idea of getting an extra day off each month to perform their own personal administrative work (paying bills and making appointments, for example) over the idea of making 10% more money a year.
Younger respondents were especially interested in this idea: 69% of Generation Z (ages 18-24) and 64% of millennials (ages 25-29) said they’d prefer a “life admin” day, while 68% of baby boomers (aged 56+) preferred a salary increase.
According to the survey, which was commissioned by Trust & Will and conducted by OnePoll, 46% of respondents have already taken an unpaid “life admin” day off for themselves — including over half of more Gen Xers (ages 40-55), at a higher rate than any other age group (54%).
Half of all respondents (51%) even said that most of the time, they don’t actually feel like an “adult” — including 55% of men compared to 46% of women.
Decision fatigue — when long periods of decision-making lead to worst decisions being made over time — is a common problem for 80% of respondents.
Similarly, 73% have experienced some form of executive dysfunction, which is marked by an inability to focus, prioritize, or complete simple tasks.
Another 67% of respondents said they can be easily overwhelmed by life admin tasks, and 57% often procrastinate on tasks that they know will only take a few minutes.
Commonly cited procrastination-traps included making medical appointments (37%), renewing an ID or license (34%), scheduling a haircut (31%) and updating or writing a will (31%).
A further 58% claim they frequently worry about doing life admin tasks incorrectly — which, according to Trust & Will’s Head of Legal Patrick Hicks, is a frequent cause of procrastination.
“A lot of people put off important responsibilities, like drawing up a will or trust, because they have no idea how to get started,” said Hicks. “But with the proper resources, it’s not nearly as difficult, time-consuming or expensive as it might seem.”
Instead of seeking professional advice in these areas, however, more people tend to turn to family members (42%), friends (39%), or their own research (34%) for guidance.
Not surprisingly, 80% agreed that teaching these types of life management skills should be required teaching in schools.
“There should absolutely be more education about how to do important life admin tasks like estate planning,” Hicks added. “But people also need to be educated about why these tasks are so essential in the first place. After all, what’s the point in knowing how to fill out paperwork if you don’t know what the paperwork can do for you?”
Of course, there’s always the feeling of accomplishment -—which is probably why over half of those polled (58%) admit to adding tasks to their to-do lists that they’ve already completed, just to be able to cross them off.
10 MOST HIRED LIFE ADMIN PROFESSIONALS
- Cleaning person (30%)
- Accountant (28%)
- Lawyer (27%)
- Caretaker (26%)
- Health aide (26%)
- Gardener (25%)
- Personal assistant (22%)
- Housekeeper (18%)
- Nanny (12%)
- Driver (6%)
TOP 5 WORST LIFE ADMIN TASKS
- Responding to messages and emails (31%)
- Making phone calls (31%)
- Reaching out to customer service (27%)
- Updating their planner (26%)
- Organizing files (26%)