Reduce the Stress of Taking Vacation Time

By Harvard Business Review
April 30, 2019

Some of us worry about taking time off, but these four tips can help you relax and just go.

For many workers, it’s easy to leave vacation time on the table. Some believe their workload is too heavy or that no one could do their job while they were gone. Here are some strategies to help you handle the stress (and go on vacation). 

Plan ahead: When leveraged correctly, going on a vacation can offer a tremendous incentive to get projects done — but you need to plan for it. Block out time on your calendar to complete must-do items. Plan to complete these items at least a week before you actually leave.

Partner with peers: Reach out to your co-workers a week or more in advance to make them aware of what you will need, such as taking care of a specific responsibility or keeping an eye on certain projects. Write up any deadlines and deliverables, as well as contact information for key internal and external stakeholders, clients and yourself while you’re away.

RELATED: How to Disconnect While on Vacation and Plan for an Easier Return

Decide to wait: Once you’ve figured out what you will do before leaving on vacation and what can be handled while you’re away, clarify what you will not do until you return. Wait until three or four days before you leave to make the final call on what’s in or out.

Sign off: There may be good reasons why you may check in with work while you’re away, such as following up on a deal that’s about to close or responding to a time-sensitive item. But set limits.

Copyright 2018 Harvard Business School Publishing Corp. Distributed by The New York Times Syndicate.

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