While you may not believe it, vacations can actually help you professionally, not just personally.
To understand why, just think about how it feels when you really need time off and then think about how that impacts your work.
You start missing details and deadlines, you get frustrated with colleagues and the projects that usually excite you end up just feeling like busy work.
Sometimes it’s just a bump in the road but other times the only way to reset is to unplug.
While the pandemic continues to throw a wrench into travel plans for many, road tripping close to home or having a nice, relaxing staycation can lower your stress and help you unhook.
So whether you’re taking time off or just thinking about it, here are a few tips to help.
Bring your feelings with you
Many women have trouble with vacations because being unproductive makes them anxious.
When you’re used to being in GO mode, stepping off the treadmill can feel even more uncomfortable than staying on it…and the guilt that comes with relaxing can keep you from taking any time off at all.
So here’s a suggestion: let yourself feel guilty.
Simply plan your vacation, bring your guilt along for the ride then give it the chance to settle and see how good the time and space can be for your soul.
You can let your guilt know that you’ll probably be more productive when you get back to work which can make your decision easier and your experience better.
Think outside the box
When I take time to relax and enjoy, I often get a surge of ideas and inspiration…and many of my clients do as well.
New energy, new environments and the opportunity to disconnect can really help our visions expand. Stepping out of our routine gives us a different perspective and gives our brain and our intuition the chance to get creative.
The key is to take action on ideas that show up quickly so you don't slip back into status quo.
Dive into that project, join that group or class, upgrade your office space or take whatever steps you need to create something better for your work life soon.
That way, your vacation can help you feel good and it can serve you professionally too.
Embrace the chance to change
When we give ourselves a taste of freedom from work, it’s sometimes hard to reengage.
Most of us feel some post-vacation blues but soon we’re back in the swing. Others experience returning to work like it's a prison sentence.
If you’re in the second group, you have choices: either change the way you work or change your work entirely.
Convince your boss that you’ll boost the bottom line by focusing on what you love and do best. Systematize, delegate or hire out tasks that annoy you or waste time. Revamp your schedule so it finally fits your work and your life.
If it’s really bad, focus on your next move and start planning your exit strategy.
While vacations support your wellbeing, they can also help you see your work with fresh eyes and be a catalyst for a new, improved version of your career. So just remember that the next time you’re worried about taking time off…and give yourself and your work a gift.
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