It’s no secret that having a healthy work-life balance is critical to success. We’ve all heard a million times the strategies on how to reboot and recharge; to maintain success and to be a better and healthier human, father, employer, friend.
-Exercise – check!
-Meditate – sure
-Find your passion – okay
-Take time to eat, don’t eat at your desk – right…
-Sleep 8 hours a day – in your dreams!
We’ve all made these lists. Maybe some of you made one as your New Year’s resolution. Good for you! But are you still doing it? Be honest.
I’ll be honest. I try to do all of those things. Some days are better than others. But running several businesses and restaurants on three continents – it’s not all going to happen. Here’s one resolution I have yet to break and considering I made it over 10 years ago, I think I might be onto something:
When I’m off – I’m really off.
Here’s the deal, most people use out of office messages, but they still look at emails. Or they go to bed cuddling with a smartphone, embracing their Instagram feeds instead of whoever is next to them. I need my time off to be real time off. So when I say I’m not looking at emails, I stick to it.
“Time off” can be a vacation, it can be a personal day, a weekend, a few hours or even 10 minutes in the morning before the rest of the house wakes up. It can even be uninterrupted sleep (with your smartphone way off in the distance) or a midday power nap. Whatever it is, make it count. Just power down your computer or phone and make it meaningful.
When you really take time off, you’ll find you’re more present when you’re on and when you’re “off” There’s also research that suggests that “strategic renewal” or all the things I listed above, boosts productivity, job performance and health.
So what if there’s an emergency? I’m lucky enough to have a team that supports me and if there should be an emergency, they know how to get in touch with me. However, these days there are a hundred ways to deal with this prospect: smartphones have do not disturb modes that allow you to program certain people numbers to ring through, even your spin and yoga studios will hold your phone at the front desk and come get you in the middle of class if you are concerned. Really think about what you are considering as an emergency, and then think again, remember a time when we didn’t even have cell phones?
That’s the sentiment I tap into when I go away. I like to leave everyone with a little bit of humor and a sneak peak into where I’m going in my head when I disconnect and head out for my away time. And I use my out of office messages to really drive home this message . Here is a sampling of some of my recent out of office messages. Feel free to steal them or get creative with your own. Whatever you do, follow my lead and stick to it!
Are you inspired to create your own? Hope so. Here’s to a healthier and more productive 2016!