Power Play: Know when to take some time off

Power Play: Know when to take some time off

Power Players don’t get sanctimonious about the occasional day off. Because they know taking some time off can be magnificent for the soul. When you’re working at a million miles an hour and need to be at the top of your game, but stopping for a day of sleeping in, catching a movie or just watching TV can be incredibly restorative.

The world won’t fall apart if you step off the merry-go-round for a day. It can be the best way of getting back some much-needed perspective or having some good old-fashioned fun without a deadline. And it’s often in those moments of doing nothing when the best ideas come and you find your centre.

Power Players have always known this and it’s saved them (and their careers) more than once. Try it. Get good at it. Not only is it fun but it will reset your head, too.

The story

The best self-imposed time out I ever witnessed was by one of my best friends. He’d been working 18-hour days for three months straight, weekends too, compounded by bad food, no exercise and no life outside of work. He was completely burnt out.

Finally he took a week off (not an official holiday: he told his boss that if he didn’t like it he could ‘retire’ him) and did absolutely nothing … and everything. He slept in. He went for a run. Watched marathon television. He rang his friends and family. He had absolutely no schedule and simply went with the flow, and he loved it.

He also realised that although he loved his job as a corporate lawyer, he would either negotiate more help or he’d leave. When he went back to work his boss was so relieved he gave him the help he needed, fearful that such great talent would walk out the door.


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