Take A Vacation
Take A Vacation: It’s Time To Recharge Your Batteries
For those who have been able to truly disengage from work while on vacation, you know the benefits can be quite significant – both for you and your workplace.
Yes – many of us might need to challenge some norms to make this happen: the fear of being perceived as an underperformer; the pressure to see it as a win-lose proposition – either we meet our client and customer needs or our own personal needs; or the worry that maybe there’s no point to take a week off given the demands to be available while away and the difficulty transitioning back upon return.
But there’s a lot to gain when we push back at these norms.
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In fact, we’ve learned from the Shared Care parents and Integrated Leaders we’ve worked with, that taking vacations can increase the skills we need to approach work and life in an integrated way.
Here’s a list of things you can do before you leave, and when you return, that should help increase your chances of enjoying your time away from work and minimizing the challenges upon your return.
Vacation Check List:
- Plan vacations around the “seasonality” of your work. Try scheduling longer trips for less busy periods of work and “long weekend vacations” when work is busier.
- Minimize the unexpected. Coordinate vacations with your team. Talk to clients a few weeks before leaving. Ask delegates to complete work that needs reviewing a week before you leave.
- Block off pre and post “quiet” work days. Avoid scheduling meetings and phone calls the day before you leave and the day you return to allow for the “unexpected” and for catch up time when you return.
- Create a “what can wait” list. A week before you go, create a list of things that you can wait to get done after vacation, versus tasks that must be completed before you go.
- Decide how “connected” you want to be. If you need to check email or voice messages, plan ahead around what’s least disruptive.
- Carefully define emergencies. Think ahead about what challenges could arise. Clearly define emergencies to avoid everything becoming one.
- Plan ways to totally disengage from work. Avoid the “I’ll just get this one thing done” trap. If you can’t disengage for the whole vacation, set a firm goal to at least disengage for part of your vacation.
- Pre-schedule “check in” calls. Set up meetings or calls to review the work you have delegated to others the second or third day of your return.
- Plan different trips to meet different needs. Family and extended family vacations are fun, but couples may also benefit from having a long weekend away just as a couple.
- Keep track of what worked well. Create a list you can refer back to of helpful ideas for planning your next vacation.
And don’t forget, creating vacations that really recharge our batteries may also require us to change how we approach vacations as a family.
What tips have you learned to make the most of your time away from work? Send us your success stories. We will then gather them up and make them available to the entire ThirdPath community in a future email update.