June 17, 2015

Take Time to Take Vacation


Does the thought of taking a vacation feel like work? Now that I'm my own boss, you'd think it'd be easy to take holidays. What I've come to realize is just the opposite.

Lately I've been thinking, “I need a real vacation.” By ‘real’ I mean a vacation where I’m not thinking about work or checking email or wondering if a newsletter got out on time or planning my next blog post. I've discovered there are two things that stop me from taking more vacations.

Money is an obvious reason. When I take vacation, I have to pay someone to work for me. For ‘billable’ work, this can mean that much of the revenue goes to expenses, and there is very little or no income for the vacation period. On top of that, I have to pay someone to do the things I do for ‘free’, such as responding to emails and phone calls. That quickly chews up any remaining revenue. And then there’s the cost of the vacation itself.

Really getting away from work is the other challenge. I received an email yesterday from a client on vacation who needed help to access her email remotely. I’m not the only one who finds it difficult to disconnect.

Here are the reasons why it’s so important that we do take vacations:
  • Relieve stress
  • Improve mental agility - a well-rested mind is often more creative
  • Improve physical health - by catching up on sleep and exercise
  • Spend more time with family
  • Enjoy life - smell the roses, relax on the beach, or lie under pine trees
It might feel like more work to plan a vacation, but our minds and bodies will thank us for the break.

photo by lindadaley / Flickr
originally published in Work Better, Not Harder June 17, 2015

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