In order to grow you’ve got to switch off

Aruba

Modern life is tough. We just don’t switch off any more. We need to take a break, from everything. It’s good for the soul. Switching off from everyone and everything can do you the world of good.

Years back when I was setting up my public relations company, I used to visit the various business forums (this was before twitter and facebook were mainstream). You’d see the same names pop up late at night, frantically working and come bank holidays, Easter and Christmas, they’d swap taking a break for more work. The question “whose working this bank holiday” would often be asked.

It created a bit of unease with me. As though if I dared to take some ME time on a public holiday I wasn’t in to my business enough and the whole world would fall apart.

It was bullshit. I see that now. In fact nowadays, I probably work less and get more results – go figure. It’s not that I don’t work hard or work long hours – I do, but I know when it’s time to take a break, step back and shut down – even if it’s just for 24 hours.

Author of Activate Your Life, Andrew McCombe says “We often overlook the importance of proper rest and relaxation, but without it our bodies don’t have time to repair, recuperate and grow.”

EXACTLY. In order to grow you’ve got to switch off. It really is THAT simple. {click to tweet}

Here are 4 reasons why you should to take a break… Continue reading “In order to grow you’ve got to switch off”

Freelancer’s Guide To Going On Holiday…

When you’re freelance or self employed it can be difficult to tear yourself away from work, but as I’ve mentioned before in this post, you need a break.  Without a good break your brain will turn to mush and your clients won’t be getting the best version of you – and who wants that? But I know (more than anyone) what a hassle it can be arranging a trip when you work for yourself.

Here’s a quick list of things you need to do before jetting off to make sure that you don’t come back to a whole heap of stress…

Sardinia 2011

Before you go…

Make sure your clients know you’re away. If your client knows you’re on holiday then they are less likely to try and contact you. Just send a quick email to anyone expecting work or an update a few weeks before you go.

Send any invoices in advance: Unfortunately whilst it feels as though the real world isn’t still functioning whilst you’re away, it is and you’re still going to have bills to pay upon your return. So send your invoices early or schedule them to go out automatically. The same goes for any bills that may need paying.

Plan your workload: Work doesn’t just stop (hopefully) so the weeks leading to your holiday may very well be a more hectic than usual. Plan and prioritise your workload so that you stay on top of your game.

Set that auto-responder: Seth Godin declares email bankruptcy (the act of deleting all those e-mails that piled up while you were having fun, so they don’t ruin the vacation glow) before he goes on holiday. He sets his auto responder to simply say: “I’m on vacation until x/x/2013. When I get back, I’m going to delete all the email that arrived while I was gone, so if this note is important, please send it to me again after that date.” A bit of a harsh move but if you get a lot of nonsense emails then you may find that this helps save you a lot of time.

If you take calls, forward them to voicemail (I usually ask them to just send an email as I’ll pick that up when I’m back – I’m not quite at the email bankruptcy stage).

Whilst your away…

Switch your data and wi-fi OFF. If you’ve got a smartphone or iPad then you’re going to be so tempted to just “quickly check” your email. Trust me when I say that you won’t just quickly check it you’ll see something that will drag you in and you’re supposed to be relaxing. If you want to continue to post of social media then delete the email accounts from your phone. You can put them back when you return.

Take a notebook: If you’re anything like me then holidays are where you get your best ideas. Taking a notebook will help you get those ideas down and it’s very therapeutic.

RELAX:  Remember you’re going away to relax and recharge. The moment you slam that front door is the time to switch off from work mode.

Should I check my email?

Hola from a warm and gorgeous Madrid…I was planning on doing a few travel related posts before I left but in typical Rachael style I didn´t quite have the time. Anyhoo, I´m just checking out the cyber-suite in the ultra modern Axor Feria (review will be up when I´m back) so thought I´d pop on, check my email and write a small post…

I usually like to shut down when I go away but with the lure of free wi-fi and lots of exciting projects on the boil I buckled. Which then reminded me that I wanted to share this great infographic by Dell…

Should I check my email?

 

 

 

Right, that´s enough from me, I have wine to drink and tapas to sample. Next stop – Palma!

Adios!