Hello Vacation-Life’s Secret Door to Wonder

I happen to read this quote by Steve Jobs while walking in one of the Corridors of an office I visited recently, that read “If today were the last day of your life, would you want to do what you are about to do today?” This made me pause for a while and I thought to myself I would surely head out to see the world. I know that came out instantly from my love for travel. Vacation-My favorite time of the year, Year? not really! I believe in taking shorter vacation 3-4 times a year and have always encouraged a culture of work life balance. I ensure that taking time off remains a priority.

So many years in the corporate world I have noticed Some people see never taking vacation as a badge of honor. Maybe it makes them feel important. They’re just too vital to the organization to be away. Others want to tell you that even when they’re on vacation, they really can’t stop working. Maybe they’re afraid they’ll be replaced. Maybe they’re afraid others will discover that they can get along without them. But it does make you wonder—why go on vacation if you’re only going to work? The purpose of a vacation is to take time away from work to enjoy yourself!
In our super-connected world, it’s easy to be hooked to work for the majority of our waking hours. So to step back from the daily grind gives one some perspective. You get the opportunity to look at the big picture, the picture of life. It’s too easy to get caught up in the details that make up our daily work instead of focusing on the greater vision for where we want to go both personally and professionally. A week away from the office can help you do just that. Why is vacation important?
  1. Digital Detoxification -We are not addicted but trapped by our increased dependence on technology. Our smartphones are not making us wiser. Vacation gives an opportunity to do away with smartphones and laptops by choice. These gadgets are amazing and help us stay organized at work but the amount of distraction it causes has a big impact on our lives, our health and our relationships. Use those hands for digging tunnels in the sand and turning the pages of a book instead of just for tapping away on screen
  2. Disconnect and Reconnect– Remind yourself that you are much more than your job. However much you love your job, it is a mistake to define yourself too closely to your work. Take time to reflect on what you want to achieve in life and think about your definition of personal success. This should help you during those times when work gets difficult and the pressure becomes unbearable. What is your definition of life success? A barefoot walk on the beach, rolling in the puddle of muddy water, stopping to smell the flowers, dipping your feet in the cold water of a river, watching the animals move, birds sing, cooking your favorite dish etc are some activities that help you to reconnect with yourself and gives you a bigger meaning of who you are.
  3. Delegate and Establish Growth -You have coworkers and teams for a reason. That reason is not simply to have happy hour companions. Letting your team members take on some responsibility not only gives you a break, but lets them grow. It’s a lot easier for you to chill during vacation when you’re confident that someone else is making sure the office doesn’t burn down. Even if a major issue arises while you are on vacation, it doesn’t mean you have to drop everything and get to work. Let your point of contact person be the first person to address the issue and only jump in if it is the last resort. By letting your co-workers manage the issue, you help build their confidence and show that you trust them. Not to mention most issues work themselves out anyways.
  4. Travel makes you Happier  – The world is a book and those who do not travel read only a page – St Augustine. Travel is good for lots of things, but it can also increase mental well-being – and not just in the short-term. Traveling can make you a happier person by building self-confidence, making you more social, better at making a conversation, more adaptable, more patient, providing new experiences and memories, breaking routine and allowing you to meet people from all over the world. Travel simply teaches you how to be happy.
  5. Your Best Self– No matter what your idea of a vacation is,  whether it is to stay home and spend time with family, travel around the world, join the mindfulness session, play a sport, do some social work, read a book. Slowing down for sometime cultivates our ability to do things knowing that you are doing them. You become aware that you are aware and helps to regain that lost energy incredibly well and you return to the workplace with much more zeal, passion and ideas. You tend to notice much more about your people and business as you did when you were always around. 
What’s your idea of vacation and how do you disconnect to reconnect?

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