Last week, I had the pleasure of traveling to Frankfurt, Germany to attend my brother-in-law’s wedding. I was genuinely excited during the weeks leading up to our trip, as it meant four days off from work…I couldn’t wait! As our departure date drew near, I made sure that all outstanding “to-do” items were taken care of, both at work and at home. I dropped the dog off, responded to all pertinent emails, and prepped for a few things that needed to be taken care of in my absence. I got it all done! So I thought!
Once we boarded the plane, a familiar and unsettling feeling engulfed me…WHAT DID I FORGET! I immediately dismissed this feeling, and resolved that I would handle whatever I forgot once we landed in Germany. I had my personal BlackBerry, my work BlackBerry, and my iPad…I was all set! Can you imagine what happened next?
Seven hours and twenty minutes later, we landed in Frankfurt. That gave me seven hours and twenty minutes to make a mental list of all the things I forgot to do before we left, a list exclusively comprised of work things. Again, no worries! We got our rental car, and headed for Babenhausen. We arrived at the hotel, and I immediately headed for my electronics. And guess what…..NO SERVICE! BlackBerry 1 had no service…BlackBerry 2 had no service…and there was no Wi-Fi in the hotel for my iPad! What in the world was I going to do!?
I’ll tell you what I did…I relaxed! I’m absolutely certain that I could have found somewhere that had Internet access, but I declined. Why? As a Professional Diva, I have the tendency to be a workaholic. I am always thinking about work, even when I’m not there. It is definitely not a good thing. The only thing worse would be stressing about my lack of electronics while I was visiting a beautiful country that I had never visited…that would have been a crime!
As professional women, we have to learn to enjoy ourselves minus the thought of work. What’s the point of working all of those hours, and not taking time to enjoy the fruits of your labor on vacation? There is none! Additionally, not taking time to relax and enjoy time completely away from work is the main ingredient in work-induced “burn out.” We work hard so we can play hard, and in doing so we have to force ourselves to let go.
And that’s what I did…I let it all go. Whatever didn’t get done would have to wait until my vacation was over. Period! Once I made this decision, which took all of 30 seconds, my vacation officially began. I enjoyed myself in Babenhausen: I ate, drank, and was merry, and I refused think about work until Monday morning when I returned to the office. I even had the chance to read a book while I was away, which I never have time to do anymore because of my busy work schedule. All in all, I had a fabulous time, and I returned to work refreshed!
The moral of this saga is that we Professional Divas must hold ourselves accountable for our own sanity, which includes getting away from work…completely away…no BlackBerries, no iPhones, no iPads, no laptops, no Internet, no Wi-Fi….you get the point! We deserve an electronic-free vacation. We earn it every day! So….when’s your next vacation?