Rest, reflect, relax and recharge
A recent week in the sun, allowed for a period of rest and reflection. A much needed time to recharge the batteries. Work has been very hectic and it has made me truly understand the importance of such breaks: Not only on my stress levels, but also in relation to productivity and energy levels at work.
I have met a few people recently who haven't been taking their allotted leave entitlements because of large workloads. I have had to actively encourage them to devise a plan where they feel able to take time off! If people continue to work long hours for an extended period of time, it causes inefficiency to creep in, leaders become less effective and teamwork becomes strained.
If you have a customer-facing role, it is expected that you will face the public with enthusiasm and energy every day. In order to keep these attributes high, regular breaks with a chance to restore your energy levels are absolutely vital.
With technology and the ease of availability to work, for example emails and voicemail, in order to take a complete break and recharge you need to be extremely disciplined. You need to stop checking emails and getting involved in work related issues while on holiday, as a matter of urgency. Ask someone to read your emails while you are away, so that they can edit all the rubbish and leave only those you need to action or actually read. Consciously make an effort to change your daily routine while on holiday. On a recent break I had, I didn’t set an alarm for a whole week. One week of utter heaven, allowing us to wake completely naturally. There was no schedule of activities. Instead, we just decided on the day what to do: Again a completely different routine.
As a consequence of deliberate changes in our routine, we had a chance to rest, recharge and reflect. Our energy levels were restored and we were able to bound in to work as we got back. The usual three morning coffees became one, simply by taking a proper break.
Take care of yourself and your work – plan your holidays.