I’m sitting here with a stinking cold, having just found out that my poor old dad has pneumonia, writing a blog about vitality! The irony is not lost on me.
It’s an interesting word though ‘vital’ and one which we use and abuse with gay abandon on a regular basis, due to the various meanings the English language has assigned to it.
Vital…from the Latin word Vita meaning life
Vital (adj) = indispensable, essential, needed, of the utmost importance
Vital (adj) = life-sustaining, fundamental, basic
Vital (adj) = lively, energetic, exuberant, sprightly
Vitality (noun) = the state of being strong and active…zest, irreplaceable lifeforce, passion
In a work or business sense we all like to think of ourselves as vital ….in that we are, of course, indispensable. Some of us also like to think of ourselves as vital in the sense of being lively, energetic, or my particular favourite…sprightly!
The truth is though, that if we want to continue to be vital…in any sense of the word…if we want to maintain our vitality…we have to accept the need to recharge and refresh every now and again, and spend quality time away from those things, and sometimes those people, who drain it.
A good old fashioned two (or ideally three) week holiday is the only proper way to do this.
Let’s face it, as a business owner you could be working from 6am right through to 1am…every single day if you wanted to…it would literally never stop. You could easily burn yourself out to such an extent that you lose your spark, lose your ability to think straight, to be effective, to make the right decisions. I’m sure we’ve all been in that position many times…when you just know that you’re ready for a holiday…and yet how many of us go ahead and take one? And I mean really take one. Switch off the blackberry, leave the laptop at home, fully delegate authority for decisions until you return?
By believing that you are too vital to take holidays you slowly but surely lose your vitality…you have no spark, no energy, no exuberance…you are no longer the irreplaceable lifeforce that your business needs.
And of course it’s vital that you maintain and look after that irreplaceable lifeforce.
Plan your holidays at the start of the year, put them on a planner in permanent marker, book them and pay for them in advance…because the truth is that there will always be something that needs to be done…something that only you can do…a reason for not going away. The business world never stops, particularly not if it’s your business, but even when you’re working for somebody else, they’ll work you 24-7 if they can and they’re not going to want to lose their best employee…even for a couple of weeks!
The magical thing you’ll discover about holidays, is that in the few weeks leading up to you going away, you experience a ‘burst of meaningful productivity’ in which you get all of the important things done. You meet the people you need to meet, you clear the projects with deadlines looming, you get the decisions made that need to be made. Magic happens in those few weeks!
And it doesn’t stop there.
On holiday you’re going to have the best ideas you’ve had in a long time. You’re going to move into a part of your mind that’s free-thinking, that’s expansive, and that give you dynamic exciting visions of what you’re going to do in the world. They won’t happen in the day to day…they happen when you’re on holiday.
You’re also going to meet very different people and have very different conversations. You’ll be on a rickety old bus winding your way through the mountains miles from anywhere, and you’ll find yourself sitting beside the next door neighbour of someone who you’ve been wanting to do business with for the past twelve months. These sort of remarkable things happen all the time..when people take the time to take a holiday.
Your vitality is essential for your business…you at your exuberant, energetic, passionate best is exactly what it needs. Take the time to rest and recharge. Take it regularly. Go on holidays that thrill and inspire you.
Be the irreplaceable lifeforce that you know you truly are!
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