take it easy
Taking a well-timed break from your work is as important as anything you’ll do for your company’s longevity. Here is what to do and how.
What’s that feeling when you’re managing ten unique tasks, you’ve got deadlines to meet, bills to pay, family obligations to fulfill and you haven’t gotten around to cleaning your motorbike for months and you stop loving your exciting new idea as much and taking your partner out for the evening starts to sound like one more task on your checklist? Welcome to the international ‘can’t-leave-my- work-alone club’. Good news is you can check out any time you like.
In the beginning, the fact that you eat, drink, breathe, sleep your idea is passion personified. You feel good about the fact that you’re super focused on your work and the results show that your hard work is paying off. You keep at it, Thinking you can keep it up – the late nights, the missed meals, the micro-managing, working at home and the work updates in the middle of a family conversation. Then one morning, you suddenly don’t want to get out of bed. You don’t want to go to work. You don’t want to take another call or sit down for another meeting. All you want to do is tune out, change gears, get out of the grind for a bit. Here’s the fun part: You taking a break is good for your company. Take it easy. Here is how:
1. Have a plan: What do you want to do? This is a small break from work not a 3-month vacation so writing your autobiography will have to wait. Be practical. Plan activities according to the weather, the company and your comfort level. This is your holiday.
2. The Replacement: But well in advance of the break, make sure you have someone who can hold the fort while you are away. Make sure this person is capable of handling?daily operations. Train him/ her right. Actually, find this person for your company anyways. It’s a better structure that’ll save you from your second nervous breakdown.
3. Tell people you’re taking a break: Make a list of people you interact with everyday – at work. Send them a short email/message saying you’re going to be hard to reach for a while but that you have someone (see 1) who can take care of any ‘situation’. Don’t leave hints about what you’re going to be doing or where you’re heading.
4. Bye bye emails – This one’s going to be hard. hard to not stay hooked onto a service that connects?you to clients or people who?run your company. This has to be done. Go to settings on your email service and compose an automated ‘away on vacation’ reply-message. Mention your date of return. Make it clear that you’re simply taking a break?and you’re not having a mid or quarter-life crisis. You don’t want potential clients to think you’re losing it.
5. Meet the people behind the status updates: You’re reading a book and you come across a great quote. You’re taking a walk and you take a beautiful picture. Of course you want?to tweet about it or post it on Instagram. No-can-do! Instead, plan lunches and dinners where you actually meet people you can share these thoughts, photos, ideas with.
6. Who to break with: If you do plan on leaving the city for a mini- vacation, make sure its with friends and/or family. Don’t plan a break with people from work – chances are you’ll end up brainstorming over a beer. The idea is to disconnect,?Not reconnect with work in Ghandruk or Bandipur.
7. Stay active: The number one thing to do on everyone’s list when they’re on a break is doing nothing. But lazing around in your pajamas all day won’t really be as relaxing as actually doing something worthwhile. Go for an easy trek. Camp?out. Plan catered parties at home. Meet your friends and family. Go out for some live music at Moksh or some art at Siddhartha Art Gallery or the Art Council. Catch the latest movies at QFX.
8. Spend a day at home: You know that place you go to when work is done and the bar closes? Where you store most of your clothes and where your parents and dog live? Yes, that place, your home, can be a great refuge simply because of its familiarity factor.
9. Catch up on your sleep: The phrase ‘sleep on it’ actually makes sense. In a test carried out on university students, when asked to solve a problem, the one who took a nap after going through the problem solved it quicker than the one who kept working on?it. Sleep clears your head?in mysterious ways and is?a great way to boost your immune system too.
10. Dive back into work: The best part of the break? That you’ll actually be able to see the results of your little get-away right away. When you do get back, you’re working on a well-rested mind, a mind that will be capable of taking on problems and challenges in a more efficient way. Make that break count.