Life’s demands are relentless. Give yourself the permission to step away every once in a while.
When was the last time you turned everything off? Can you recall a weekend without emails or social media? How about a whole week?
If trying to recall when you were unplugged for any substantial amount of time is a challenge, perhaps it’s time to make that happen. I recently realized that the last time I turned everything off for more than a weekend was 12 years ago and it wasn’t my choice. I was on a 26-day backpacking trip in high school and there was a hard rule – no electronics allowed, not even watches. And before then? Who knows.
Twelve years of constant screen exposure. Yikes. That is not a number I feel comfortable with. How did that even happen?
I suppose it started with a desire to stay connected. Facebook and text are how I communicated with my friends so the phone was always nearby. But eventually that transitioned and the majority of my lightbox usage was business related. For years I’ve told myself that I need to be as available as possible (within certain timeframes) and that I couldn’t possibly shut everything down for longer than a few days. I was needed so I had to be connected.
I’ve believed for so long that I can’t turn it off. No one else seems to do it and I’m certain no one has required it of me. There are a million reasons I’ve convinced myself to stay online almost every day. I have photos to share, thoughts to contribute, and clients to serve. But only recently did I realize that the only thing that keeps me constantly tethered to my devices is the lack of permission I’ve given myself to step away.
For 45 months, I’ve dedicated at least 40 hours a week into nurturing this business. In those 193 weeks, I’ve taken some vacations but even as the team is hard at work in the office, I feel energetically tied to it all. I still monitor my email and put the occasional fire out from afar. It’s time for a break and the only person that can make that happen is me.
The holidays are a natural time for us all to step away from the routine, to connect with friends and family, and to take a moment for some self-reflection. This year we’re melting into this lull by taking a break of our own.*
Since there won’t be any emails to answer, I’ve decided to take it a step further by turning it all off. No computers and no devices for two and a half weeks. I’ll be road tripping from Brisbane to Sydney with a group of friends so I won’t have much use for what’s happening online, anyways. There won’t be any worry about which photo to post to Instagram or when I’ll find wifi next, I’ll just be in it.
I’m taking this opportunity because I don’t know when my next one will come. Life seldom creates pauses for you, especially if you opt to stay connected. Our worlds are demanding and there’s always more that’s required from you. So what I’ve come to see is if I want the break, I have to create it. Once I’ve created it, I have to honor it fully. We all have this power and I’m excited to explore what it feels like.
*Pursuit Concierge will be offline from December 21st through January 7th. We’ll be back and ready to rock and roll on January 8th!