About four years ago I hit the topic of taking a day off in a post. One of the comments requested I remind people earlier than waiting for Sunday morning. Reading my post yesterday on the Marathon Press blog about using the phone more and social media less, it got me thinking about some of those old standards.
The truth is, so many of us risk a "crash and burn" because we don't take time off when we most need it. I'm not suggesting you need to regularly take a bucket list vacation, just step away from the business when you feel the stress coming on. Sometimes it's as easy as just setting things up in advance to NOT work at least one day a week, for most of you Sunday.
I know this makes me sound like the old fart that I am, but I miss the kind of Sundays we had when I was a kid. NOTHING was open! No banks, no supermarkets, no Target, Macy's or malls. Even gas stations were closed.
For those of you in the younger crowd who might think it's incredibly inconvenient, it forced us all to take a break. My Dad worked six days a week, but when Sunday rolled around, no matter what stress may have been on his mind, he didn't do anything except hang out with his family.
For most people a quiet relaxing Sunday had nothing to do with religious beliefs, it was merely a day of rest because you had no other choice. Nothing was open, and in fact, of the three TV stations, on at least one of them, nothing was broadcast until after 8:00 am!
Think about this for a second. What would happen if all the cell phones (email access) and computers in the house were just turned off on Sundays? Michele Celentano has a little different concept, but it follows the same family values - the kitchen is a NO Phone Zone! I don't know about your house, but the kitchen is the hub of ours, especially when we've got company. In Michele and Paul's house, nothing interferes with the focus on family and friends in the kitchen!
So, let's start a couple of trends - First, let's do a few things to blaze a trail back to some solid/retro values, starting with Sundays. We're just going to enjoy our families, read a book, leave the TV off most of the day except for family time - forget about whatever it is we have to get done on Monday. The goal is to kick back and chill - smile more than we frown and make it a great day!
Second, look at responses you're doing via email, are there a couple that involved associates, clients or vendors you truly care about? What would happen if a few of them got a personal call from you instead of just an email response? Or maybe it's somebody who's done something or said something nice about your work on Facebook? What would happen if you picked up the phone and called them?
Third, take a half hour this morning and assess your needs. If you're feeling tired, stressed, pressured by the business, is it time to take the afternoon off and do something to relax? Or, at the very least schedule some time away from the business.
My post this morning isn’t original – I’ve written about the same topic at least a couple of times in the past, but it’s a message we all need to be reminded about. Be honest with yourself - is it time you scheduled what Sheila calls a "slug day" with your family or friends? Are you overdue to step away from the business for a short or long stretch and recharge your battery?