In a woods far far away…The Queen is on vacation. I’m in the woods with Paula Dean. You see my friend is from the south and she’s forced me to come play with her and the kids in the country. Did I ever mention I’m a city Queen? Crickets are noisy, but let me get back to the point. My friend Paula calls it lake time. (I call her Paula because yesterday she cooked hot dogs in butter, SERIOUSLY BUTTER!). Things run slow and casual. She was worried about how I would adjust and said it would take me a few days. I was sure it wouldn’t. I needed this, I would be unplugged immediately! Well, you are reading this so she was right! They are all still in bed, their bodies still processing all the butter and I’m working, just a little!
In the two weeks before I was leaving I couldn’t wait. Then the week before, I started to make the lists of everything that had to get done in the Kingdom before I could leave. Then my clients started sending lists of the things that I had to do before I left. Then I couldn’t breathe. I started to wonder was this worth it. I’m just going to get behind anyway and in a week I’m going to be more stressed than when I left. What was the point of this vacation nonsense? I am usually a long weekend kind of queen. Friday and a Monday, long enough but not a big pile to catch up. But is it really a vacation?
In the Guidebooks I write, I say “vacation is intended for rest and relaxation for our employees”. We do not allow people to get their vacation paid out or roll it over. I always was amazed that people would have vacation to roll over, until I became one of those people.
I think now that we are all so connected, sometimes it feels worse to leave. You don’t want to ignore the office. But, if you answer and get frustrated or have to fix something in the middle of floating in a lake or hiking a mountain you are more stressed because it cut into your vacation. So we just don’t go. Do we get a gold star? Does anyone notice? NOPE, just the payroll person who keeps track of your hours and wipes them out at the end of the year.
What do you have to show for it? What everyone DOES notice is how miserable you are!
I was peeling myself off the ceiling to come here. Everyone was laughing at me. I was running in circles and trying to organize. All I could hear is Paula saying “there’s no cell service on the lake!” I forgot I wasn’t a doctor, I‘m just not that important. I’ve been checking e-mail at night and the only person that seems to miss me is Kohls. I open the e-mail with my eyes closed (please no stress, please no stress). It’s been just fine. It’s only Wednesday but we are hoping for the best.
As I sit in my tree house, I am slowly starting to recognize the person I used to be and like. I want to say take your vacation. You need it, your family needs it and your co-workers need it to (they would never say it to your face!).
I may come back less Evil Queen and more Snow White….Ha, not a chance!
How do you prepare and unwind for vacation?