October 23rd, 2013

10 Vacation Habits of Successful People

by Don

Are you looking forward to your next beachside vacation? Or are you one of the many employees who doesn’t have any time off planned for the next year, despite the fact that you’ve earned your vacation time? According to Hotwire, many workers in the U.S. only use a fraction of their allotted days off, often leaving more than nine vacation days unused.

If you find relaxing to be difficult even when you’re in paradise, you’re not alone there either. Hotwire also found that even when people do take a vacation, they often work through it. Just this past year, more than six out of every ten Americans said that they worked while on vacation. What most successful people know, though, is that taking a real break is extremely important for your well-being, not to mention work productivity and performance when it’s time to return to the grind. Here are ten tips that the truly successful follow during their sabbaticals.

1. They don’t give in to the thought that they’re too busy to take a vacation now. Except for the first few crucial and extremely hectic years of a startup, work will be just the way it is after a week away. Pushing off a vacation isn’t going to change that.

2. They unplug as much as possible while away. This is easier when traveling somewhere where plugging in is difficult, like a foreign country where your cell phone doesn’t work. Anywhere where cell service and WiFi isn’t available is ideal. Otherwise, it’s possible to create an electronics-free haven – all it takes is a little self control.

3. They actually use up their vacation time every year. Instead of rolling vacation days over to the next year or, worse, losing them entirely, take advantage of the time earned. Even an at-home stay-cation, where you hole up in your apartment with your favorite books and movies, is better than not taking a furlough at all.

4. They get moving to feel healthy instead of lazy. Get active! Yes, vacations are wonderful for the relaxing and sleeping late aspects, but it’s important to do something active at least part of the time.

5. They delve into a good book. Most Americans, especially entrepreneurs, spend a lot of time every day switching between various modes of information and entertainment (magazines, newspapers, social media, e-mail, etc). While
on vacation, become absorbed in something that’ll keep your attention for longer, like a novel or non-fiction book that doesn’t relate to your job.

6. They let their employees take the reigns. Stop worrying about what’s happening back at work. If you’ve hired a staff that you trust, then let them handle things on their own. Remember, your vacation isn’t just beneficial for you – employees need the opportunity to become more self-sufficient, too.

7. They take more than one vacation a year. Try to take time off every four months, preferably for an entire week, but at least for a long weekend.

8. They don’t sweat the small stuff. Let the little, nagging things about your job go to the back of your mind during vacation. While you may not be able to stop thinking about work entirely, it’s important to gain big picture perspective on your career/

9. They get inspired. Just because you’re not actually spending time working, that doesn’t mean that you can’t gather ideas for when you do head back to the office. Inspiration vacations will not only help you rejuvenate, but they’ll also ensure that you’re on your game when you’re back at work.

10. They record their thoughts. Don’t forget to carry a pen and paper on you so that you can jot down all of your memories, plans and ideas. This is especially important if you’re in a creative line of work.

Sara Wells is a travel writer who blogs on behalf of travel insurance brand Protect Your Bubble

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