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How to balance work and vacation

For most people, the ideal vacation is where we take time off work for a while, completely detach from the rest of the world and focus on relaxing. Sometimes it doesn’t work out like that. Sometimes being away from work, especially if you are the boss, may have a negative impact on business. But the thing is, you need to take some time for yourself, so how do you do that? A workcation is how.

Here’s how to take a vacation and still be on top of things in the workplace:

  1. Plan your tasks/projects before travelling

If possible, you can try to get as much done as possible before you leave. Give yourself a couple of extra hours each day the week before you leave to do the following week’s work. This way, you give yourself buffer time while you’re away. You also need to note down everything you will be working on and the deadlines. Calculate how much time you’ll spend working during your trip, then subtract that from your normal schedule and try to squeeze in the difference before you leave.

  • Let everyone know you’re travelling in advance

Work on an office reply that reminds me that you might not get a quick response, or let them know when they will get a response. Like any other out of office reply, you might include the hours when you’ll be available, how quickly someone can expect a response, and when you’ll be back in the office. Either way, it helps people know why you might be slow to reply even if you’re not technically on vacation.

  • Set boundaries

When you’re in a new place, it’s tempting to forget your work and just go explore. On the other hand, you can also work so much that you never take time to enjoy your travel, either. When you stick to a schedule, you get the best of both worlds. However, in case of any inconveniences, schedule some of this time into your schedule so that, even when you miss out on a couple of hours, you still get stuff done. Also, it helps to set some boundaries before you leave. Decide what counts as “downtime” and decide what kind of work you’ll need to get done. If you’re traveling with someone else, let them know about these rules beforehand so they’re prepared, too.

  • Pack the right tools

Don’t be too excited that you only bring clothes with you. Depending on where you’re going, it’s not always a guarantee that the technology will work all the time. And although you’re paying for high-quality service, outages happen. To ensure that you’re always connected to the internet, bring a portable WiFi router with you. You can’t always rely on your phone to read emails. What if the battery suddenly runs out in a remote place? Consider packing chargers and spare battery in case of inconveniences.

  • Choose your hotel well

You want to see if the hotel or Airbnb has the amenities you need to stay productive. Most hotels have working lounges, conference rooms and fitness centers. If you need to work undisturbed, meet with investors or make time for some exercise, you have everything you need in one central location.

  • Take advantage of downtime

No matter how busy your agenda, there’s always some downtime when on vacation. Make the most of it, even if it’s just 30 minutes here or there. You want to relax and work at the same time, for example;

  • Catch up on your emails while you’re on the subway or train.
  • If you’re traveling with someone else, finish up some tasks while they’re getting ready.
  • Take calls while you’re walking from your hotel to a nearby attraction.

Also, work outside of from my hotel room. A change in scenery is key to remaining being energized and productive. It’s easy to hole up in there with room service and cable, or go downstairs and work from the business center. When you head to a local coffee shop or bar, though, you usually get a better sense of the city. You still get your stuff done, but you explore a new spot at the same time. It can be stressful to balance both activities at first, but with some planning, it’s pretty easy to fit work and travel into your trip.

  • Take breaks and enjoy yourself

Don’t forget that the whole point of a vacation is to rest. The best vacations are the ones where you give yourself a break to recharge. Take a day off to just enjoy your vacation. Don’t think about work, don’t check your emails, even if you feel like you need to. Relax. It can be stressful to balance both activities at first, but with some planning, it’s pretty easy to fit work and travel into your trip. Don’t overwork. You don’t want to burnout on vacation. A workcation is achievable. Make the most of your journey with the tips above.

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