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Work/Life: The Importance of Taking Vacation or Time Away From Work

On this episode of Work/Life, Greg Nibler talks with Ciara Pressler, founder of Pregame, to talk about something we’d all like to do more but may feel guilty doing: Taking a vacation. Pressler discusses the benefits and importance of knowing when to step away, whether that be for an extended vacation, or simply time spent away from thinking about work.

Finding a balance in life means taking a break, but in this culture, it is seen as lazy to take any time off. And for freelancers, there’s an extra layer of guilt (and cost) to taking time off. But there are several ways we can take advantage of the time we do have, even when we aren’t taking time away from work. Pressler gives several tips on how to get away. For instance, taking weekends and making them your own, or shutting your phone off at night are simple ways to create dedicated time away from work.

Realizing that you are able to step away is also important, Pressler says. “Things won’t fall apart when you’re gone. The world will not fall apart if we’re not at work,” she says. Start making plans now, both because it will become a goal you can work toward, and also because your job can wait and be scheduled around your time away.

Vacations and time away also increase productivity. “Especially with creative thinking, sitting at a desk waiting for ideas to come doesn’t work,” Pressler says. Stepping away to take a walk or engaging in a hobby are perfect ways to keep your creativity and mind firing without sacrificing it to a grind or routine. Giving our brains some time to breathe allows for better thinking both on and off the job.

Pressler also encourages us to embrace the time we already have. A digital detox is good for anyone. “Leave the phone at home while you run an errand. Or take a week off social media.” There are lots of small ways to integrate personal time and take advantage of its value.

“Plus, the whole point of working is to live, so do it!” Pressler says. By enjoying your life outside of work, you’ll find yourself refreshed and reinvigorated for your job when you are there.

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