Read This If You Desperately Need A Vacation From Your Career
If you hang around the me for awhile, you will know that I love LOVE LOVE to travel. More importantly, I love to travel to places with great champagne or chocolate (Italy. France. Belgium. Italy. Italy. Italy. Did I mention Italy?). Years ago, I ended up moving to Italy for a few months (want to know how I did it? Here’s the story!), and I can remember thinking: “Don’t forget this lifestyle or this feeling. THIS is what you want from life.”
Before I left on the trip I was frustrated in my job, I wanted a different type of lifestyle, but I wasn’t sure what that looked like. I felt caged in, but with no clear exit or light at the end of the tunnel. I was stuck.
For me, it all changed one day when I stood looking down at the Arno River in Florence and I realized…”oh! THIS is what I want to feel like!” *facepalm* I was so calm, peaceful, and happy in that moment. Sure, our apartment had lost electricity, and even more puzzlingly, water. Sure my internet didn’t work and I was reliant on an old blackberry and just my work email for connection to the US. Sure, my hair had decided to look like a bad wig that day (damn the change in voltage and my US hairdryer!).
But it didn’t matter!
Because I finally relaxed and was able to see, for the first time, what I wanted my life to look like down the road…and it looked a lot like where I was standing right in that moment.
Even though I was only there for a few months, that trip to Italy changed my life.
It opened my eyes to opportunity and a new lifestyle. It allowed me to get some much needed perspective on my career. And, it gave me space to breath and think: “Ok. This type of life is what I want. Now I just need to figure out what that looks like in terms of income and how to get here.” Most importantly, it got me motivated.
I think, for many of us, when we contemplate a career transition, we get overwhelmed. We freeze up, we have no ideas or too many ideas, and our thoughts circle like a trapped hamster in a wheel.
Or we work too hard and end up feeling burned out and tired even if we originally liked our jobs.
It’s a hard cycle to break, one that drags you down and takes away your energy. And it leaves you LESS motivated to figure out your next job or next career path…so you end up doing nothing.
Instead, I’d love to invite you to break the cycle and take a real vacation. Go away for at least four days and unplug (the science on this is solid, you need time off). See what is around you. Watch the water or the river or the mountains. Experience things in a new way. Turn your brain off from work. And then see what comes. New ideas, new thoughts, or even just “I think I want to do this activity again” can be enough to rejuvenate you and get you going in your career.
Or give you some much needed clarity for a great next step.
Either way, take a moment right now and plan that vacation – I give you full permission. Or, at minimum, put a reminder on your calendar to sit down and do it. Whether you go away or just do a stay-cation at home, the benefits are amazing and I want you to get them.
You deserve this!
In the comments please say where you are going on vacation and why, and make the rest of us jealous! Or maybe inspire some folks to take off for a while. (Note: I’ll be vacationing in DC briefly with friends, enjoying attending many weddings… AND enjoying all the sweet tea I can drink!).
And if you are stuck in your job this summer – get yourself signed up for magic (and get UNSTUCK) over here!