Switching Off from Work When on Holiday and Travelling

Recently I've been busying myself writing travel posts about my recent trips to Las Vegas (you can read about it here) and Morocco (find it here) and day dreaming about my next adventures, so today I wanted to talk about something I found quite difficult for both trips - switch off from work.

Growing up my mom had always had quite stressful, attention heavy jobs. And when we went on holiday, despite her best efforts there were times she was answering calls and emails from the sun lounger. As a graduate I felt this pressure enormously as in the past people have told me you can't take any time off during your time on a grad programme. This really worried me to begin with but I've come to realise it was completely ridiculous. 


So, in our ever more connected world how do you switch off from work? 

The easiest thing I've found is that preparation is key. If you're taking time off work it's likely that you've booked it off in advance. Take the opportunity to tie up work and projects before you leave. If there's on going work then discuss with a team member or someone else on the project to take on your parts whilst you're away. I've found my colleagues more than happy to help, and I'm always willing to return the favour when others go away. 


Having someone else looking after parts of your work helps with my next tip. Turn on your out of office. This email lets anyone who contacted you know that you're out of the office. Don't forget to include the date you will be back at work. Another key thing to include is the contact info of the person looking after your work, so that anything urgent can be dealt with. If you work in a client facing role it can also be useful to let them know you will be away a day or two in advance.

So now you've escaped the office, with help at hand and your out of office turned on. What next? 

By far the easiest thing to do is to not take anything with you that has access to your emails or your work phone. Sometimes the temptation just to check in with things can be too much and the next thing you know you're deep in an important email conversation and really wish you were back at your desk for five minutes to just get this little small task done. Stop it. Don't even give yourself the chance to be tempted. I find it quite easy as I don't have a work phone, I have a work iPad which gets quite cumbersome to carry around and I don't think I'd be willing to sacrifice any of my luggage allowance for it. This means when I go away, I don't have my emails and no one can call me. Those that need it do have my personal phone number however, so in case of something really super urgent they can reach me. 


The thing that makes switching off from work actually quite easy is the place you are travelling to and the people you are with. Our world is full of beautiful amazing places, and whenever I travel the last thing I want to do is miss out. 

On my recent trip to America I so welcomed a break from work that I didn't think twice about it. There was so much fun to be had in Las Vegas and so many new sights to see in San Francisco that I was too immersed in our trip to care about work. And I was pretty sure I wouldn't be returning to any disasters when I got back as I'd asked others to pick up urgent things whilst I was away. 
So my tips, prepare before you leave, don't take work phones or access to emails with you, and enjoy the place you're visiting! The opportunity to travel should not be overlooked. 


How do you switch of from work, when on holiday, or just in the evening and on the weekends? 

6 comments

  1. This post is so relevant, I really struggle not to be thinking about work, the future and stressful things like that whenever I'm trying to relax! Booking time off work in advance is always the best thing to do as doing it last minute can mean an absolute hassle for you and your boss! Great post x

    |Georgia Megan|

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Hun! Absolutely, booking time off in advance rather than last minute can help make things less stressful. I'm such an overthinker, but I'm getting better at switching off and relaxing! X

      Delete
  2. I try to stay off social media when on holiday, it stills me from worrying about work or anything like that! X

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I had completely forgotten about social media!! I generally just leave my phone in the hotel safe when I'm away but sometimes it's tempting especially when most places now have Wifi!
      X

      Delete
  3. Returning favours is a big one! In corporate world is so much easier to work together rather than as an individual! Best Wishes, Iga http://igaberry.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's definitely a piece of advice I'd give for anything and everything! I'm not sure how people who freelance or blog full time do it!
      X

      Delete