My husband and I recently disconnected from the rest of the world for a week while we took a cruise to Alaska. It was our first ever cruise and our first time to Alaska. It was by far the BEST vacation I have ever taken! And I fell in love with Sitka, Alaska. If my hubby was to ask me to drop everything and move there right now – I seriously think I would.
Don’t get me wrong – I did miss my kids. However, to basically sever all ties to anyone or anything I knew other than my beloved and to spend a week just chilling, enjoying the scenery and being spoiled – it was EXACTLY what I needed. I came back refreshed and appreciating my family more than ever (especially my wonderful mother-in-law who stayed with the kids and took care of my house!) And I came back with a new outlook on life that is still sticking (for the most part) even a month later.
The sad part was even though I was disconnected from all communication with the outside world other than small periods of time when we were in port – I still caught myself thinking about my “to-do” list for when I got back home. Some related to the kids which is understandable and I’ll forgive myself for, but the majority was related to work. Which is crazy because I was not worried about what was happening while I was gone – I have an amazing team that takes care of things. However, I was mentally making plans for what I needed to do when I returned! That is when it hit me how bad I’ve become. I can’t even shut off my “work brain” on vacation when I’m being spoiled and have no wi-fi or data access. It took me a few days to finally stop doing this and really enjoy my vacation. (I highly recommend a cruise – I’ve never been so spoiled and well taken care of in my entire life!!)
The good thing that came of this though, is it opened my eyes. Since I’ve been back I’ve been much more conscious of my work time versus my family time. And more importantly, my work brain. In the past even when I stepped away from my desk I would still have my work brain running in the background – sometimes in the foreground. I have a very strong work ethic and working for a big global company it is easy to never truly “shut down”. There is always more that could be done and someone else out there working in your network who may need your help. Since my return I’ve been very purposeful about actually shutting down my work brain during my family time. I’m still stressed as all hell when I’m on the clock – but when I walk away from my desk (which is right next to my bed – that does not help!) I have been making sure I really let that go. It has helped my sanity immensely.
So here is to vacations and those “ah-ha” moments in your life that result in changes that have a big impact on the good of your family as well as your physical, emotional and spiritual health! And here is to cruises and Alaska. I can’t wait for the next one!