How often do you take an extended time to relax and rejuvenate? Now, I am not asking about your weekend activities. I know we spend time relaxing on our days off from work. However, to really unplug and relax, our body and mind need more than the typical two-day weekend.
So, let me restate the question. When was your last vacation? Yes, a vacation! Before we go any further, let’s define vacation because some people think a vacation has to be spent traveling to an exotic place.
Merriam Webster defines vacation as:
- a period spent away from home or business in travel or recreation
- a respite or a time of respite from something.
Therefore, your vacation could be an extended time away from enjoying your favorite hobby or activity. For example, some friends of ours are passionate about cycling. Consequently, they plan their vacations around cycling events across the country.
Recently, my husband and I went on a spectacular vacation to Alaska, which has been on my list of places to visit. Our trip was a combination of land and sea. We spent seven days cruising the inside passage northward and six days traveling the state’s interior. It was a fantastic experience.
During our cruise, we experienced a helicopter ride and dog sledding on a glacier in Juneau. Then, at Icy Strait Point, we enjoyed whale watching. Next, our scenic tour of Sitka included historic totems, bears, and bald eagles. Then, in Skagway, our White Pass Railroad Tour helped us travel back to the days of the Yukon Gold Rush. Finally, on our way to Seward to begin our land tour, we spent time at the Hubbard Glacier.
Although the cruise was incredible, the land tour was spectacular. The train ride from Anchorage to Fairbanks included stops in Talkeetna and Denali, where we saw several moose. While traveling is one of my favorite activities, you may enjoy reading, physical activity, or fishing. The goal is to take time to relax and rejuvenate.
Ann Lamotte said, “Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you.” In addition, research conducted by SHRM consistently shows the health benefits of vacation time, like improved productivity, lower stress, and better mental health.
“Vacations mean a change of pace, a gentleness with ourselves, a time of rest and renewal, and a time to stretch ourselves and encounter new people, new lands, new ways, and new options.”-Anne Wilson Schaef
As a leader, you need to unplug. So when you take a vacation, not only will you reap the benefits, but so will your team.
What will you do to unplug and relax?
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