Recharge Your Batteries
While working hard gets the job done, there comes a point where you need a break. In today's busy world, our weekends are rarely stress free, and usually full of "To Do's" that include running all the errands that you could not get done during the work week.
To be effective in your job, you must have some time off. In the United States most people only get two or three weeks of vacation time. If you have children, this means that you will undoubtedly need several of those days to cover school holidays and other family events, thus leaving you with very little time for real time away from your daily routine.
For most of my life I strung my vacation days together with holidays to take long weekends. While this seemed like a good strategy, I rarely felt like I ever got a real break from work. I never had the time to decompress before I was back in the office.
I never took an extended two week trip until 2005. I was always nervous about being away from the office for ten work days, but discovered that I was more effective as an employee before and after my long trip. I spent the weeks leading up to the jaunt working extra long hours to ensure that everything was completed before I left, and did the same thing upon my return to catch up and see that nothing has slipped through the cracks.
The funny part was how excited I was about my work life after a long vacation. I had a fresh perspective and new motivation. I have now taken extended vacations every year with the same results.
The down side is that I use up most of my vacation time with this strategy, which limits my ability to take long weekend getaways, but in the long run, I am much happier with one longer relaxing trip.
Thus, with few days in my pocket to recharge all year long, I have developed a strategy for talking little pieces of time to relax. I love to read and wake up 30 minutes early every day to ensure I can take that the time to read a book each morning. Because my commute is long, I often leave home early to beat the traffic and stop for coffee on mornings when I do not have a business breakfast or early meeting. Over my coffee I steal back that half hour from my day and emerge myself in a book. On the days I get this little bonus, I always feel more clear headed and focused.
While reading a book might not be your best source for a mental boost in a 30 minute window, discover what activity would bring you peace and calm, and schedule it into your day a couple of times each week. You will learn to cherish your half-hour vacations.
If you do not find a way to recharge your batteries, you will experience burn-out. This will not be beneficial to you or anyone around you!
Have A Great Day