I have advocated in the past about the importance of taking a vacation. Part of my series on Mainlining Sanity has a great deal to do with taking time off to recoup, regroup, and regenerate. It is vital and we fail at this, often. We are a smart society, yet we have not figured out how to take a true break, to unwind, to let go. I recommend FULL vacations, not extended weekends. Time off is imperative.
The Smokers vs. the Non-Smokers
Taking breaks during the work day is also a good time to daily mainline sanity. One of my former employers had a pretty even split between employees who were smokers and those who were non-smokers. The smokers consistently took their breaks – at well-timed intervals. The non-smokers did not, but saw the smokers taking breaks and at first harbored a bit of resentment. It wasn’t long before spontaneous, fast & furious, and twice daily Uno games were taking place in the break rooms and conference rooms among the non-smokers. The smokers went out for <ahem> fresh air and some 20 non-smokers were throwing cards at each other and laughing hysterically while jammed into a conference room meant to hold no more than six. The mini-vacations rejuvenated my co-workers and eased some pent-up “break-time” resentment.
I learn many lessons from quiet time away – vacation or sanity breaks. I typically come back feeling refreshed and ready to rumble. And that break – big or small – is always needed, very much needed. In the past, I have failed miserably at realizing how quickly rest and relaxation can fade away. Part of the reason I write about mainlining sanity is to remind myself of what I discovered while away.
Learn from My Painful Lesson
A past lesson including booking two international trips practically back-to-back, one was two weeks in the South Pacific and the other was two weeks in the UK for work with a short nine days between trips. Not a good practice and a hard lesson to learn. My body clock still hasn’t recovered – learn from my experience. Recover from sleep deprivation and jet lag brought on by international travel before you punish yourself further with MORE sleep deprivation and MORE jet lag.
My advice? Don’t do this. The rest and relaxation I had gained flew out the window when I settled into at next to on my red-eye to London last night. But in feeling the peace I gained slip away, a sad awareness crept in as I settled into my seat on my red-eye flight to London: it is not easy to mainline or maintain sanity.
Stave Off Exhaustion
Exhaustion has no prejudice. It does not discriminate. But it can deteriorate your peace of mind, if you let it. I have no plan to become familiar with exhaustion again, I eat well and go to bed early when I can. Again, not easy – but necessary…
by Rayanne Thorn