How a vacation can kick start you professionally
We hear about “balance” and the importance of self-care daily; we hear more and more about companies implementing perks and programs that help to aid their workers in finding more joy and wellness in their time away from work; we have read the articles outlining the proven research that happier employees work faster and more efficiently; but we still live in a society that values its workforce based on the hours worked.
Even though I have long believed in prioritizing work productivity over hours clocked, I have often found myself self-valuing based on my commitment to long hours, vast periods of no vacation, etc. The flaws in that belief system were pointed out once again when I took a week away from my computer and returned reset and restored to take on the challenges I had paused. I was reminded of the importance of stepping away from work so that you can return with a new approach and here are a few reasons why:
With each new experience your perception of the world changes. This often is so small we don’t notice the shift but sometimes we might spend our vacation jumping from cliffs or running with bulls and come back feeling bolder and ready to bravely face new challenges.
Traveling internationally exposes you to new design, flavors, and customs and allows you to bring new visions back to your work. With every new experience we are given a little bit more of something (joy, courage, compassion or even heartbreak and disgust), and that little extra something might be exactly what we need for an upcoming project.
When you step outside your usual routine, you tend to break your consumption patterns as well. Instead of watching the same tv shows and reading the same news sites, you might listen to a new podcast on your road trip or read a new genre of book as you lounge on the beach.
The more developed we are as individuals the better we can service our work. Breaking out of routine and having time to absorb alternative information, creates a more expansive mind to the benefit of your work.
TIME TO LET THE MIND FLOW FREELY
In our day to day lives, there is often little to no time built in to let the mind wander. We run from project to task to errand and around in circles until our head hits the bed. Many are troubled with challenged sleep patterns as the mind circles incessantly while you urge it for peace.
When we step away from our desk and force ourselves out of the trivial tasks of daily routine, we can give our minds intentional time to flow. New perspectives and fresh ideas are likely to pass through and, BONUS, you might sleep better too.
BIGGER PICTURE THINKING
As you get out of the minutiae of the small tasks plaguing your to do list, you can start to think more broadly. You might discover alternative approaches to challenges you are facing that were previously hidden behind the layers of small things to get done. When you step away from the small challenges you often can find large-scale solutions.
Vacations are the best but our quest for “balance” will continue to be weighted with a significant amount of time working. We need to find ways to step out of the pattern of to do lists and into more expansive thoughts on a more regular basis. Taking a mid day walk might offer time to let the mind flow freely and setting aside 15 minutes a day to read on fresh topics might give you some new information, insight and tools to use in your career. So in conclusion…take vacation but also take time throughout your day, week and months to have new experiences, absorb new information, let the mind flow freely and think big picture….because it’s good for your career but also just good for you.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Jenna Thompson
Jenna is a mountain based Yogi with a love for veggie focused foods. When she's not in Warrior Pose you can find her spending time with her Avalanche Rescue Dog Luna with a Matcha Latte in hand!