Last week, I tried to take some time off work. I planned to see my friends in Seattle, attend a conference in Las Vegas and finish painting my master closet. I also wanted to take a few pilates classes and run with my local crew.
Well, life had different plans for me. I did see my friends in Seattle. That was great. But no Las Vegas, no pilates and very little running. I stayed home and worked. A lot.
I’m pretty irritated. I work for myself. What the hell?!
Looking back, I can see why this staycation failed.
Lack of communication.
I didn’t block my calendar and tell people that I was taking time off. I accepted a few meetings because those events felt important, and then I took ALL OF THE MEETINGS. Lesson learned? If I don’t respect my calendar, nobody will.
Lack of clarity around deadlines.
I work with very busy people. Nobody is rude, but meetings are often rescheduled and deliverables are often late. Normally, I can flex my schedule to help other people out. Lesson learned? A few weeks before my staycation, I should have been clearer that I was serious about meetings, due dates and project timelines.
I don’t know how to take a staycation.
This is true. I work from home. I’m on the internet because it’s my job. Everyday looks like a vacation to my friends and colleagues, and I can’t argue with that. My career is a blessing and a curse. Also, it’s tough to turn off my electronic devices for work but still enjoy my computer and iPad as a normal person who lives in a world where Facebook and Twitter are fun. Lesson learned? Maybe I can’t do staycations. Maybe I should be on a beach.
So what’s next?
Well, my next big test is at the end of May. I want to take a few days off for a writing conference. I have promised myself that I’ll avoid all HR-related work. I will have fun! There will be joy, dammit!
God knows that I can’t quit you fools on Facebook and Instagram, but I am not taking any meetings.
(Not yet, anyway.)