Making the most of your holiday
Making a top ten list of the most popular of my weekly emails, this one from June 2018 comes in at number 7. It generated comments and discussions and having been back at work for a few weeks since my holiday I'm glad I used the time to it's best advantage.
Just before starting my recent holiday an email from the great team at Unstuck came in with the subject line "How to get the most out of your next vacation', this was one of those that I decided to dig into straight away - a sign from the universe I figured. I was reluctant about going on leave. I love my job and wasn't feeling exhausted or drained, there was a lot going on and I have to admit to some fear of missing out by going on leave. I am wise (and Jedi) enough to know that a real break is important for me and my team. I was confident about stepping away from all the work in progress despite the feeling that I was just getting the hang of my role.
Time off is essential, helping to avoid burnout, reduce stress and keep you creative. As a leader in healthcare it is also important to support and facilitate your team to have the time off they need and are entiteld to.
Let's admit though, letting go can be a challenge and the pressure, desire or need to check those emails, take those phone calls, or even to check in while you are away can be overpowering. You justify this by saying you are supporting your team - are you though? Revelling in your own importance and need to be in control might be closer to the truth - I recall doing just this in a previous role checking my emails while I was away. I became so mad at one email I read it became all consuming for me. I couldn't do anything about it, but I spent time and energy thinking and overthinking it, wasting and destroying the value of my holiday. I have learnt.
Stepping away let's your team know you trust them, allowing them to deal with issues and problems that they might not normally be exposed to. This creates stretch and will develop them in ways that would be impossible if you were there.
Re-looking at the advice from Unstuck following my holiday, I did OK. The main tip I took was not to overdo it. I often over plan and super schedule my time away. This time I followed the advice and actually did a whole lot of nothing, plans to catch up with friends were made at the last minute and it all worked out fine.