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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.
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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