Take Real Time Away
For whatever reason, this field will suck up your entire life if you let it. I get that there is no schedule for emergencies or disasters, but often the fault is ours; we cannot really step away from the work. Our 40 hour a week job continually soaks up more and more of our personal time.
How many times have you promised to spend some time away from the office or to take a weekend with family, only to sneak a look at a text on your phone, call the office, or scan through your email? I am as guilty as the next person. My computer bag is always a part of my travel gear. What can we do to disconnect and to step away from our jobs in order to enjoy our lives?
Don’t allow the job to monopolize your time. There are times when you are required, but most of the time, it can wait. I don’t know about you, but most of the emails I get at work do not require my attention at all, let alone during my time off.
Surround yourself with skilled people. Hire people who are better than you and then give them the ability to do the work. If your presence or OK is required to get anything done in your office, you are actually doing your job and theirs. In fact, your people will feel empowered knowing you trust them enough to take your hands off the wheel for a bit.
I have heard others suggest taking different kinds of vacations: those where you completely disconnect, and others where you allow yourself to still do work with some clearly defined boundaries. Make sure you’re not in semi-disconnect mode on all your vacations though. It’s not worth it. As hard as it is to imagine, things will be fine without you for a little bit.
Any work dealing with emergencies or disasters is hard to schedule, but we must make sure that we are working hard to plan for what we can. I am not telling you to leave your cell phone at home and head to the beach for a week, but you can let some calls go to voice mail and return them later.