Did you know it’s been mathematically proven that if you step away from a problem, you have an increased chance of solving it when you return to it with a fresh lens? Like many of you, I took some time off earlier this month for the US 4th of July holiday to spend quality time with the family. I have to admit it’s difficult for me to completely and utterly disengage. So I take my phone and laptop, but limit them to a) before the family gets up, b) after they’re in bed to get caught up, c) never at meal times.
What absolutely amazed me was how many moms and dads had their devices by the pool or the beach, while the kids were desperately trying to get their attention, engage or play with them. Now, I’m not judging but what I’ve learned is that my kids are growing up way too quickly and that you’ll never get that time back. I’m as guilty as anyone in prioritizing work sometimes vs. the really important things like family time. Sometime, it can’t be helped. But it often can.
You see when I hear someone say, they’re “busy,” what I really hear is them saying that the task at hand is simply more important or a priority. I’ve often said that a healthy relationship, begins with a healthy self. If you don’t take the time to disengage and re-energize, you’re seldom looking at life, situations, or relationships with a fresh lens. Back in 2010, WSJ published this article on why relaxing is hard work! Or this one by ReliablePlant on why so many are afraid to take hard-earned vacations. Unfortunately, many of the same challenges are present today, if not exasperated.
I don’t know what works for you, but figure out how to disengage. Really disengage and take a step back from the office. Before it becomes even more consuming that it is today. You deserve it. Your loved ones deserve it. And as the old adage goes, no one has ever been quoted on their death bed saying “damn all those days I took off to spend with the family unit!” After all, we work to fuel our lives, not live to work!
Make it a great week.