With the school holidays starting today in the UK, it is now peak holiday season. However, it can often take people 4-5 days to truly switch off and wind down. Meaning you are just getting into the swing of recharging your batteries by the time the holiday is over. 

This article will look at what you can do practically to properly and quickly switch off when you are on holiday.

Why it is important to properly switch off from work when you are on holiday

The pace of life in the professions is relentless. We are humans not robots and need time to properly recharge our batteries from time to time. Otherwise we just burn out and make ourself very ill. Adrenal fatigue anyone? However, it can be tempting to still be attached to work and the office when we are on holiday. All this attitude does is stop you recharging your batteries properly and can often demonstrate a lack of trust of your team and colleagues covering for you when you are away.

Get everything done before your holiday

One of the best ways to truly switch off is to make sure that you get everything done before your holiday. That way you can leave without worrying about anything whilst you are away.

In 4 ways to get everything done before your holiday I share 4 tips for how to make sure you use the last day before your holiday to clear the decks, e.g.

  • Prioritise what has to get done before you leave for your holiday and what can actually wait
  • Delegate as much of your to do list as possible
  • Stay productive during the day by taking regular breaks
  • Turn off all distractions

Get clients to help you resource their work appropriately

It is always sods law that when you are planning to go away, the client which has been dithering for months about a piece of work presses the button to proceed, just when you are about to head off into the sunset. The best thing you can do to avoid this scenario is to stay close to your likely pipeline of work and have honest conversations about when they want the work to be done. If they are aware of your holidays and you are proactively telling them when you would like to do this work, you may find that you stop the work piling in the week before you go away. Of course, for time-sensitive and distressed services types of work, this isn’t really possible.

Block yourself from your email

This is a hard core tip which I use fairly often to make sure I am not tempted to check my email whilst I am away. As you will find out in A tip to help you really shut off from work on your holiday  I will ask my chief organiser to change my email password. That way I can’t get into my email whether I like it or not. My chief organiser always knows how to contact me if something does come up that needs my attention.

9 tips to switch off from work when you are on holiday

It can often take people 4-5 days to properly unwind and really distance their mind from work. So, what can you do to speed up this unwind time?

In 9 ways to leave your work behind when you go on holiday I share these 9 tips to do just that:

  1. Leave the blackberry or work phone at home
  2. Ask your PA to change your email password
  3. Ask someone to screen your voicemails and emails whilst you are away
  4. Give your PA an emergency contact
  5. Commit to your other half and family that you will be truly present with them
  6. Fully brief your team (Our team briefing tips – free download – may help you with this.)
  7. Tell your clients when you are away on holiday and who will be handling your account whilst you are away
  8. Write a plan to clear your workload before you go away (Our weekly planner (free download) can help you with this)
  9. Put an out of office email and voicemail message on

In summary

You owe it to yourself to take a proper break. Just make sure you take the break mentally and physically.