If you hear yourself going around saying, "I need a vacation," you may be forgetting that you are a citizen of the Kingdom of Whimsy and that you need to affirm your citizenship once in a while.
The summer I was finishing up my Master's I was under stress and realized it when I noticed that I had a constant headache, all day, all night. One night I woke up from a dream, laughing in delight at the visual display of swirling colored lights I was seeing. The headache was gone. I decided that my inner self had decided that no matter how serious I was about finishing the degree, mothering my two children and getting a job for the school year to come, I had to let in a bit of whimsy to get through it all.
I have a friend who will do more than simply forward the funny e-mails she gets. She will compose and label funny pictures and send them to me. She really belongs to the Sisterhood of Whimsy. A successful professional woman, who knows how to take a moment here and there to lighten up.
Don't wait for a vacation, or the week-end when the "fun" you give yourself is sometimes more trouble or expense than it's worth. Play whenever you will, whenever you need to. That is a good way to keep stress at bay.
Do you have a shrine to whimsy in your car or home? You may have without realizing it. If not perhaps you may want to create one.
The Kingdom of Whimsy is not for long term living. But to dip into it, visit there briefly from time to time, is to live on a higher plane.