Ah, summertime! Many are enjoying vacations, traveling, or having adventures outside. It’s traditionally a season to switch gears a bit and even take time off to recharge.
Earlier this year Brené Brown announced that she would be taking 3 months off over the summer. I believe she called it a sabbatical.
When I heard that news, my first reaction was, “That is so great! I am so happy to hear that she is doing that. She deserves it.”
I knew that Brené had just finished writing Atlas of the Heart, and she filmed an HBO series based on the book. She's been busy, she works hard, and she deserves some time to rest and recharge.
And then I thought, “Well, what about me? What do I deserve?”
I’m a doer. I like to be busy and I genuinely enjoy my work. I like to feel that I have been productive with my day - that my efforts made a difference.
When I’m not at my best, I can sometimes evaluate my sense of self-worth by how productive I have been.
“How valuable am I? Well, what did I get done today? Not a lot? Well, I better work harder so that I’m worthy.” Maybe you can relate.
When I am at my best, I genuinely know my value and I don’t feel like I have to hustle for my worth.
I also know that when I take some time off, I return to my work refreshed, renewed, and even more present and grounded.
And I know that taking time off from work is truly beneficial to one’s well-being. Taking even just one day off can help reduce stress, clear the mind, and increase productivity.
And get this - studies have shown that taking vacations can improve heart health! Now that's a great reason to take a break!
So even though I know this, why might it feel so hard to unplug & relax?
As I continue to work on this in myself, I am focusing on building in more time to play and recharge. More hikes. More yoga. Less doing. More being.
I had a client who recently decided to do the same and he felt the impact of this almost immediately. Not only did his energy increase, but he was happier and more productive when he was working. Others noticed as well and commented on his new attitude and sense of calm.
How do you approach having “down time” or taking time off? Whether it’s a 3-month sabbatical or a Saturday just for you? I’d love to hear your tips and experiences as I expand more into this arena.
Until next time, be brave, relax a little, and take good care.
Katie is a Certified Dare to Lead™ Facilitator and Executive Coach.