If you live in the UK and rest of Western Europe, the last few months have probably felt like a constant holiday with a continual heat wave as we finally get to experience what it is like to live in California or Australia, waking up to hot 30C+ and blue sky – each day! OK, so a lot of countries around the Mediterranean Sea have reliable balmy weather, so it is just the UK where this is a novelty then! And as my Antipodean friends have reminded me, the UK is where the transport overheats…
The staycationers have lucked in however rather alarmingly; the average employee in the UK took only 62% of their full allowance of holiday last year.* This is a disturbing trend. Many senior corporate leader clients tell me that they find it difficult to switch off when away from work with some routinely being available at weekends, even when away with their family. They worry about an assumption to be constantly contactable however as I remind them: as a leader, you determine the culture of your organisation and teams.
So here’s the Brighter Thinking strategy to enjoying a holiday:
1. You deserve a holiday
You work hard and give so much more than what is expected every day. You probably work longer hours than stated on your actual job contract or what you anticipated as a business owner and may not take the legal amount of breaks that you are entitled to every day. Social media scrolling is not a break!
2. Your team needs a break from you
Yes they do. Remember what it felt like when you had a boss and they were out of the office? Enough said.
3. Friends and family would like to recall what you look like
They would love to see your face for a change and not the top of your head when you are usually looking down at your digital device. Giving someone your undivided attention is apparently a rare gift. My clients remark that no-one listens and focuses on them like I do…
4. Your most precious resource is time
You will never get back the time that is now. Use it wisely. No-one has ever said that they wished that they had worked more or spent more time gazing at their Smartphone. Posting online about your holiday whilst you are there is not a holiday – you have a need that is not being met.
5. Recharge and motivate
Totally disconnecting from your usual day-to-day world is proven to be good for your brain, mind and body. Ignore this and your success and health WILL suffer, not necessarily immediately, but when it is most inconvenient. Humans are a complex system. They need to go off-grid every so often.