Friday, May 15, 2015

Joy Journal: Get out of dodge

You may or may not have noticed this week's delay in posting for the series. I've been in vacation mode and it's been glorious. It's been so nice, in fact, that I decided to add a post on the value of travel. Sometimes the quickest way to get a boost is going out of town.

There's nothing wrong with day trips here and there. But I'm particularly fond of a total change of scenery. You know...the trips that require rental cars, hotel stays, flights, and if you're really lucky, passports.Vacations have a way of putting things in this important perspective: you are both less important and more important than you think.

Here's how we're less important. As much as we'd like to think we stop the world and tell it to carry on, we don't. When we're absent, life has a way of moving on without us. The urgent task items reveal themselves as perhaps not that urgent at all. If they are, someone else will do them. People go on living and coping without us and that's a good thing. When we believe ourselves to be essential to every facet of life than we don't give ourselves permission to rest. Ultimately, that leads to burnout.

That brings us to how we're more important than we think. Self-care shouldn't be seen as optional; self-care is essential to being effective in anything we do. Getting away from your usual context and unplugging for a while can do wonders to recharge your batteries. It also gives you the energy needed to be productive when you return to the grind. Remember the happy behavior from last post? Smiling, laughing, enjoying the outdoors? Those are much easier to do when you aren't weighed down with your regular duties and responsibilities.

Basically, vacations let us hit the reset button. They let us take a break from serving and enjoy being served. They allow us to let go, simply be, and just rest and recover. You can enjoy that in smaller doses right where you are- random days off, extended weekends, staycations. But in my opinion, if you really want to feel renewed I say get the heck out of dodge.

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