Vacation Tips In This Over-Connected Age

by Randy Murray on July 26, 2010

I’m away this week on our yearly family vacation. I thought it would be a good time to pass on some things I’ve learned over many years of working in and for businesses. These aren’t my typical Getting Things Done or productivity tips. These are actually the opposite, or how not to do much of anything at all and because of that, get more things done at some future date.

Today: Don’t call the office.

I know. I understand. It’s tempting to want to just check in, let them know back at the office that even though you’re not there, you are still engaged, still in the game. You wouldn’t want them to discover that they might be able to get by without you. There’s a certain level of fear that something might happen and if you’re not there to take care of it, bad things will happen and you’ll be blamed.

But here’s what I’ve learned: you never get good news by calling the office while you’re on vacation.

Yes, work will pile up. That’s the nature of work. As long as you’ve properly dealt with your tasks and projects and you don’t leave any nasty surprises behind for the remaining staff, everything will be fine. In fact, everyone would prefer that you took a few days off, got some rest, and came back refreshed and energized.

The point of taking a vacation is for you to disconnect from work, focus on yourself, your family, your friends and do something you don’t ordinarily do. Work you do all the time. Calling the office will keep you from relaxing and putting your focus where it belongs for this short period of rest and relaxation.

Last year, while still an employee, I had to break this rule daily. It not only made my vacation tense, but it made it difficult on all those around me. This year there’s no office to call back to and I couldn’t be happier about that!

Please take a vacation and don’t call the office!

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