Staycation’s Can Boost Productivity I Promise!
Something had to give, I needed a break and I needed it fast. After working my ass off without much financial gain and churning out endless posts, I needed to re-evaluate my priorities and some time away would do me the world of good. The only issue was how I would fund this ‘quick vacation’ when I barely had a penny to my name. I quickly looked at holidays abroad and shuddered at the prices; even with the little money I had, I could not afford to vacation outside the UK. I was at my tethers end; feeling sluggish, de-motivated and fatigued could I find the pep in my step? The answer was so simple, what about the ‘staycation’ I had heard so much about? After all it would be a cheap, quick fix and I didn’t need a fancy hotel room.
After finding a hostel that would give me three days peace and quiet for £60 and included free wifi and breakfast I was sold. Sure it was inexpensive but best of all it would give me the quiet tranquility that I craved. When entrepreneurs work around the clock to run their businesses, the prospect of ‘rest’ is alien but we all need a break at times. As I work three jobs including blogging my energy levels are often low; being able to hole away in a random hostel would help clear my mind. After all who wouldn’t want a solo vacation away from home? Besides it might not be abroad but at least it was in a different city.
Going on a staycation felt lonely at first as I was so used to noise, that the silence was unnerving. As I settled into the quiet silence my mind began whirring with ideas. I wrote pages by hand of post ideas, SEO tips and ongoing posts to write, before translating it into my computer screen. There was no rush but I took advantage of the rare free time I had and wrote an average of three blog posts a day. I answered emails and scheduled posts in advance but best of all I felt calm and de-stressed. There was no second job to go to and before I knew it the three days were up in a flash. I was almost sorry to leave my hostel room behind but I needed to return to reality.
Why Should You Go On A Staycation?
According to Dan Sullivan, co-founder of ‘Strategic Coach’ entrepreneurs will benefit from ‘free-time’ because that is when productivity occurs. In other words when we are most ‘immobile’ we produce our best content, because there is no pressure to perform. When entrepreneurs are under pressure we ‘balk’ and exhaust our mental and physical capacities to succeed. Sullivan’s philosophy makes complete sense; when I work too many hours I have less motivation to be organized and deliver content. I spend hours perfecting posts and delivering audience driven content, yet sometimes its not enough.
Going on a staycation taught me how to ‘effectively’ organize my time. Since coming back from my ‘mini-break’ I have found it easier to ‘relax’ and am working shorter hours. I know when I go back to work it will be more challenging to be productive but for now I feel refreshed. When we allow our bodies to rest, our minds get ‘nutrition’ resulting in a ‘renewal of energy’.
How Staycation’s Can Restore Our Mental Resources
We often mistake ‘sleep’ and ‘rest’ as ‘boosting’ our physical well-being, yet ‘rest’ is the fuel that our brain needs too. Our mind is home to ‘mental resources’ and when we are mentally fatigued the resources are harder to access.Mental resources refer to the amount of ‘processing power’ a human brain has; when mental resources are under ‘strain’ its output of ideas becomes limited. In other words our brains are like muscles and can be strengthened or depleted. When you recharge your batteries i.e. take a staycation it results in a regular process of ‘re-fueling’.
Regular refueling (input) is a prerequisite for high quality output because our brains function on ‘energy’. If you are mentally exhausted this affects how effectively your brain garners and dispenses information. Thus if I am attempting to write a post on 4 hours sleep, after working a 10 hour day, chances are the post might be a load of s**t. Taking a staycation showed me how ‘continuous work’ has a negative impact on my productivity. I always tended to reject the 90 minute or every three hours break rule, as I thought I could work faster over a longer time period. Sometimes though it is not about how ‘fast you write’ a post but the quality of your work. In actual fact not taking breaks often makes me procrastinate in between posts, whereas time away from my computer produces far superior quality of work.
How To Use A Staycation To Boost Productivity
- If the purpose of your staycation is to ‘work’ then set working hours with regular breaks in between. For example 12-6 or 9-3, ensuring that you don’t work past the cut off time. For me I would start at 12 after having a hearty free breakfast, before taking a break after every blog post written. I made sure to finish by 8 at the latest and then spent the rest of the time watching movies and messing around on social media.
- Start your day with a good breakfast. Before my staycation it had been a while since I had eaten breakfast. It is so important to eat breakfast to enhance productivity, after all it is the most important meal of the day.
- If your staycation is to actually take a ‘break’ then switch off all devices or even better leave them at home. We spend so much time attached to our devices that we forget how to ‘rest’. Even if it is for a few hours each day, taking time away from our devices will help you become more productive.
Have You Taken A Staycation Before? Did It Help Boost Your Productivity Levels?
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