Are you taking a vacation this summer? No, I just have too much going on at work; I can’t afford it right now: I wish I was, but I just can’t swing it. Those are comments that I hear a lot from my clients. The perils of NOT taking a vacation have been well documented. Dealing with stress and burnout top the list.
If I told you that I had a way for you to jumpstart your business, that you would discover ways to break the grind that you are in, and that you will come up with new creative business solutions, would you be interested? If you are like my clients, you would be willing to listen at least. And you probably have already figured out that taking a vacation is the secret.
Still not convinced? This is the icing on the cake: You will improve your health and longevity. I am pretty sure everyone wants to live longer! A State University of New York survey found that men who took annual vacations reduced their risk of death by 20 percent. And a study by Wisconsin Medical Journal found that women who took frequent vacations were less likely to become depressed, tense, or tired.
Hopefully by now, you are rethinking your resistance to taking a vacation. It doesn’t have to be to an exotic place or expensive—it can even be a staycation. My coaching client, Damon, from Maverick Window and Doors, turned a command performance at a family reunion into a vacation that did everything I promised and more.
Damon’s family reunion in Canada was an opportunity to not only rekindle some long-distance family relationships, but also some cherished childhood friends. An extra bonus was the car trip with his college-bound son from Southern California to Canada— a unique opportunity for some quiet reflection road time and also time to just be with his son.
We talked about how having this reflection time was a great opportunity to visualize how he wanted his life to be when he got back. We also talked about him purposefully making some “gratitude gifts” with his family and friends at the reunion.
I was anxious to talk to Damon when he returned. He shared with me how valuable his reflection time was: “I looked ahead—at my life as I see it, including my daily routine, myself, my health, my business and I just pictured a joyous, happy me.” He realized as a result that there was a lot that he wanted to let go of. “I can’t carry all this around all the time.” He has wanted to do this for a long time, but now he has a compelling reason to really do it—he realizes that it will get him to the vision that he wants to achieve. When he was in the middle of the grind, it was impossible to see that.
But the best part of Damon’s vacation was making the gratitude gifts. When he openly shared with one of his childhood friends about how he felt, his friend looked at him with tears in his eyes and said, “That’s so cool that you would say that.” Damon said, “I just had such a good, warm feeling.”
The summer is half over. How about squeaking out some time to take a vacation if you haven’t already? And while you are scheduling a vacation, schedule in some gratitude gifts to go along.
I’d love to hear your experiences of taking or not taking a vacation. What do you think about making a gratitude gift on your next vacation?
p.s. I always am interested in what you think about these discussions. Please post your thoughts on the blog…your constructive criticism and support is appreciated!
Dr. Lynn K. Jones, Certified Personal and Executive Coach
Your Mojo Maven
Dr. Lynn K. Jones is a Certified Personal and Executive Coach. Her doctoral work completed at the Wurzweiler School of Social Work, Yeshiva University concerned organizational culture; she coaches, consults and trains organizations on what they need to do to create organizational cultures that are aligned with their vision and values. An MSW@USC faculty member, Dr. Lynn K. Jones, MSW, DSW, CSWM, teaches Human Behavior and Social Environment.