As we settle in to the new year, most of us have been asking and answering the “how was your break?” question continually for the past couple of weeks. For some, the response is positive: “fantastic, I feel totally refreshed!”. However, in contrast, some find it very difficult to switch off and put the work laptop or phone away during periods of leave.
Thanks to our big wide world of technology, the ease of access to email, text and social media means that people are now contactable 24/7, no matter where they are. This results in nearly 73% of Australians (and rising) continuing to work in some way while they are on leave. While commitment to our roles is admirable, time to unwind is extremely important for mental well-being. We should all come back from a break feeling de-stressed, refreshed and re-invigorated.
So, how can we have a true break from work and switch off what might be awaiting for you when you return?
Once you walk out of the workplace, switch off!
Work on pulling yourself up on any feelings of guilt about being away. Your holiday entitlement is as much a part of your package as your salary. Not taking a holiday is exactly like taking a pay cut! By not relaxing at all, you’re putting yourself at risk of burnout.
If all of the above seems just IMPOSSIBLE for you (it isn’t!), head to a retreat in a regional area where contact with the outside world is either not possible, forbidden or restricted.