Every summer, we take a break as a family—both from work and from business. I’ve written before how important rest and recovery is (and how to know if you’re suffering from burnout), the importance of setting a slow enough pace that you can sustain, and how even during the busiest seasons a little rest can change everything.
It’s important to rest and recharge from whatever your normal routine is, even if you love your job and the work you do. In addition to the break from work, I’ll also be taking time away from social media on my annual social media sabbatical (which I’ve experimented with each year, and written about for Harvard Business Review). Taking time away can be eye-opening and revealing. Sometimes the act of pausing something or stopping it entirely can be more revealing than if you pushed through and tried to just keep going.
A little backstory about why we take this family break
A few years ago, when we first had children, my husband talked to his workplace about parental leave. He knew that while he’d like to be home during the first few weeks during and after the birth, he was also interested in being able to be around with his kids while they grew up. So, the summer after our first kid was born, he shifted his schedule to work from 8am to 4pm.
Today, we also both take about a month off every summer to be home with the kids. This is his fourth year taking a month off. As a writer and an entrepreneur, I’m taking time away from my business and regular schedule to try new things, go to the beach, and enjoy the long days. I’ve deliberately built a schedule that corresponds to the academic calendar year, and most of my programs launch in the Fall and Spring, with a lighter teaching load during the summer months.
While I still check in every other day (or so), just to make sure all the students in my programs are okay, I now have an assistant who checks in on the business automation systems so that I am able to go completely off the grid for a while. This last year was the first year I added a second coach to our mastermind practice, which has been amazing—she teaches a few of the sessions of my mastermind whenever I’m on vacation or need to travel to a speaking gig.
For the most part, we’ll be out of the office through Labor Day, taking our kids to the pool, the beach, on camping trips, and on biking adventures.I’ll also be doing a two-week social media sabbatical much like the experiments I wrote about for Harvard Business Review, logging off of all of my social accounts and taking a full break from checking, browsing, posting, scrolling, and all of the things, good and bad, that social media can bring up.
Here’s a few resources for you — on business, clarity, and finding focus — until I’m back in September
- Podcast Episode #124: Summer break: the backstory
- Podcast Episode #123: How to focus when you feel overwhelmed or unclear
- Podcast Episode #122: Win more business, make more money
- Podcast Episode #121: Redefining startup success (and switching your business model entirely).
- What does it take to be great? The 20 Mile March concept
- The 25/5 rule for finding focus
I’ll be keeping my reading list updated for the year, and will post new ideas to the blog here.
See you all at the end of summer.—