By Sunny Simon
Gazing out the window as the train chugged along the tracks on the Grand Canyon railway I smiled and sighed with immense contentment. Following my own guidance worked out well. It is my job to dole out advice each week in this column. Last week in the article that appeared on July 21st I urged readers to take time off to refresh and renew. After submitting the column to our publisher, I gathered up my husband along with some dear friends and we headed out to the Grand Canyon for a three-day getaway.
The premise of my last column was to take a summer vacation and head out of Dodge. The benefits of getting away from the workplace, or your daily routine, for a few days or more are immeasurable. When we arrived back home my suitcase was filled with a few souvenir trinkets and my head overflowed with happy memories.
It is no secret that burnout is the enemy of innovation. The research about time-off promised rejuvenation. Upon reentering into my normal routine and diving back into my work, I agreed the experts had it right. I felt refreshed and ready to take on new challenges.
Another benefit of stepping away is returning with a different perspective. Surveying my “to-do” list I realized honoring my commitment to my set goals required some regrouping. Taking advantage of a client’s need to reschedule, I blocked out that time on my calendar and reassigned it as a power hour. If you are familiar with the common term power hour, it’s not the drinking game (taking a shot of beer every minute for an hour) I am referring to. Setting aside sixty minutes to focus on and power through an activity with no interruptions is a recommended strategy for making progress on goals.
It turns out increased productivity after time-off is another truism. At the end of my power hour I was amazed at how much I accomplished. After taking a short break, I zipped through the remainder of the work day rapidly knocking items off my to-do list with ease.
At the risk of being redundant I am repeating the advice (now tried and true) on time away. One expert, Francine Lederer, a LA clinical psychologist, claims most people have improved life perspective and more motivation after a vacation citing that even a 24-hour time-out delivers such benefits. So, if I did not convince you last week, perhaps based on the multiple benefits you will reconsider taking a break from work. Start planning your getaway now! Sunny Simon is the owner of Raise the Bar High Life and Career Coaching and the author of the blog, www.lifeonthesunnyside.net