Princess Anne pays tribute to WW2 Arctic Convoy veterans

Britain’s Princess Anne lays flowers at cemetery where Russian and British WW2 veterans are buried, praises their ‘heroic deeds’ at a memorial ceremony. Rough Cut (no reporter narration)

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Contact center company Genesys to buy Interactive Intelligence

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U.S. sues to stop Deere from buying Precision Planting

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Hedge fund Barington hires Moss from Optima to head marketing

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Selena Gomez’s Time Off Is Actually A Super Smart Move

Selena Gomez announced on Tuesday that she’s taking some time off from touring because she’s experiencing anxiety, panic attacks and depression as part of her battle with lupus.

The singer, who took a previous break after she announced her diagnosis last year, told People she is going to focus on her “health and happiness.” 

And honestly? More people should follow her lead.

Gomez’s move makes a loud statement that mental and physical health should be a person’s first priority ― it doesn’t matter if you’re working a desk job or a singer who’s performing on stage every night.

“I want to be proactive and focus on maintaining my health and happiness and have decided that the best way forward is to take some time off,” the singer said to People. “Thank you to all my fans for your support. You know how special you are to me, but I need to face this head on to ensure I am doing everything possible to be my best. I know I am not alone by sharing this, I hope others will be encouraged to address their own issues.” 

How mental health conditions affect performance

While anxiety and depression are part of Gomez’s specific experience with Lupus, these mental health disorders commonly develop on their own. Nearly 40 million American adults have an anxiety disorder and more than 14 million have experienced major depression.

They’re debilitating illnesses that can lead to poor sleep, a loss of motivation and even brutal physical symptoms. And that can interfere with a person’s ability to work productively.

Many people don’t speak up in the workplace when they’re experiencing these issues for fear of being judged or punished professionally. That’s why public confessions like Gomez’s are so vital: They start a conversation about mental health conditions and what it means to take ownership of them.

“Celebrities who suffer with mental illness and are willing to talk about it send an important message,” Gregory Dalack, chair of the department of psychiatry at the University of Michigan, previously told The Huffington Post. “Individuals may be suffering from a mental illness and yet it might not be apparent to you.”

But it’s not just mental illnesses that need the kind of attention and care that comes with taking time off. Even run-of-the-mill colds get put on the back burner for work. A 2015 global study found that many people don’t utilize their sick days because of high job demands and low job security.

The benefits of taking a break

In a culture where “doing it all” is equated with success, taking time off is seen as a weakness. But it shouldn’t be that way. No one person can be “on” all of the time ― especially when their health is at stake.

Despite this, taking time away from work is a habit people rarely practice. Nearly half of working individuals took fewer than seven days off in the last year, according to a recent HuffPost/YouGov poll. And one in four Americans show up to work sick.

Of course, taking time away isn’t always an achievable option for some people. As inspiring as Gomez’s message is, an extended break would be something of a luxury for a lot of workers. Approximately 40 percent of Americans who work in the private sector aren’t afforded paid sick leave, which makes it difficult for people to choose their wellness over work. This is a major reason why more policies are needed to help prioritize well-being in the office, whether it’s a person’s mental health or physical health.

But, ultimately, time off is critical to a person’s wellness. Even just a few moments of relaxation can do wonders for wellbeing. Take note, universe.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

CheapAir Now Lets You Buy Airline Tickets With Monthly Payments

Fight booking site CheapAir is now allowing customers to pay for tickets in installments using three, six or 12-month purchase plans.

The goal, CEO Jeff Klee said in a statement, is to “give everyone the freedom to travel.” But we aren’t so sure this is freedom at all.

CheapAir’s new program works like this: Customers purchasing flights for $100 or more have the option to enter some personal information at checkout and see if they qualify for financing plan to pay off their ticket. The full cost of their ticket will be quoted upfront, with interest rates ranging from 10 to 30 percent based on a free credit check run through financial company Affirm. Accept the payment plan, pay off your ticket in monthly installments, and BOOM! You’re on your way. CheapAir says they won’t charge late fees, though delinquent accounts may be sent to a collections agency. 

But it’s better to simply budget for a trip yourself, says Phoenix-based personal finance coach Deacon Hayes.

“The reality is, you could do the same thing on your own and save the 10 to 30 percent interest,” he told HuffPost.

Hayes recommends a “countdown fund”: If you know you want to fly to Hawaii in eight months and tickets will cost $800, then simply make a plan to set aside $100 per month until the day arrives.

That’s infinitely less headache than owing interest to a booking site.

Some airlines, including American and Delta, allow travelers to play for flights in installments, but they require signing up for an airline credit card first. United’s FareLock service lets you reserve a ticket and pay for it either three or seven days later, for an extra fee. CheapAir, meanwhile, calls itself “the first online travel agency to accept monthly payments for flight purchases.”

But honestly, you may not need to take them up on their offer, if you know how to save for a trip and where to find cheap flights on your own.

Happy travels!

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.