How to Take a Successful Break from Work
There’s been a lot of talk lately about the work-life balance, and if you’re like many entrepreneurs, the scales are tilting heavily toward the “work” side of things. There’s always another project to tackle; there’s always another deadline staring you in the face. And while your work shouldn’t suffer, neither should your personal life!
The solution? Take a break!
A real break. The kind of break that brings relaxation, perspective, and sanity back to your work and your life. Whether it’s a weeklong vacation or just a day spent completely off the grid, successfully unplugging from work will help alleviate your stress level and make you even more productive when you return. But with your current workload, is “going dark” a possibility? Of course it is – if you plan ahead!
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You can’t leave in the middle of a huge project and expect to have stress-free downtime, so schedule your break when your workload is at its lightest. Then, instead of playing catch-up when you get back, do whatever you can to get ahead before you leave!
Schedule your social media posts in advance, clear out your to-do list, and tidy up your office space. Knowing that you’ve set a buffer for yourself will help you relax while you’re gone, rather than stress about what you’ll be coming back to when you return.
2. Spread the Word
Are you going to be gone for more than a few days? Ideally, you should give certain key people in your business (team members, assistants, independent contractors, regular clients, etc.) three to four weeks’ notice before you leave. This allows them time to adjust their schedules accordingly based on their needs and yours.
Remember to set up your out of office emails and voicemail greetings, as well. This gives people trying to contact you when you’re gone a reasonable expectation of when you’ll get back to them.
3. Have Your Procedures in Order
Nothing ruins a day at the beach quicker than a panicked call from an assistant or team member who can’t successfully do their job because you haven’t left them the right tools. Procedures are simple to create and they allow others to cover for you in your absence – no panic necessary!
4. Have an “Emergencies Only” Contact Method
When you’re out of the office, it’s tempting to have a Pavlovian reaction every time your smartphone dings, buzzes or beeps. How will you know if it’s an emergency? You have to answer, right?
Wrong! Set up an email account for emergencies only, and make sure everyone who has that address knows what genuinely constitutes an emergency. (“We’re out of coffee” is not an emergency!) Then, turn off notifications for everything but that account and relax, knowing that everything else can wait.
5. Commit to Being Present
Your business is important, but so are your family and friends. If you’re taking time off to be with them, commit to it! While it can be difficult to shift your focus from work to “real life,” successfully unplugging, be it for a day or a week, can have tremendous benefits on every aspect of your life!
Please share your thoughts and comments
How do you successfully navigate taking time off? What are your tips for unplugging from technology? Share your tips with us in the comments.
To contact Julie directly, you may find her at http://allthingsadmin.com/
Julie Perrine, CAP-OM, is an administrative expert, author, speaker, and all around procedures pro. She is the founder and CEO of All Things Admin, a company dedicated to developing and providing breakthrough products, training, mentoring, and resources for administrative professionals worldwide.
Julie has more than 20 years of experience in the administrative profession spanning several industries and serving in corporate and startup settings. She is also the author of The Innovative Admin: Unleash the Power of Innovation In Your Administrative Career (book), several ebooks, and the latest release, The Organized Admin (book).