periods lasting between one and four days. Usually, I take leave because I have other non-work related activities or actions to carry out. Once in a while, I take a good leave for real rest, to refresh, reboot and recharge. That happens once a year or so. I want us to spend a little time discussing the importance of taking time off for real holiday – not just taking leave to go to a funeral or to go and visit our sick relatives, or to attend church events or board meetings, to write examinations or indeed to go and attend job interviews! Leave for rest! Holiday for happy moments!
We have many proverbs and sayings in many languages and cultures that point to the principle that it takes a visitor or a new person with a fresh perspective to see and point out our blind spots or to discover things we ordinarily would not see. That is the power you can personally gain when you go for a good refreshing holiday. You come back to work a bit like a stranger with the ability to see the dark corners, blind spots and with a new perspective on matters. No matter how much you look, see, or think, you cannot see certain things that a person who has been away from the environment can see. You can only get into that position by getting out of the office on a holiday. You may argue that sometimes you go for long work trips like to conferences or training and so on but your mind is still connected to work and so you will not gain that capability in its fullness. You need a real holiday – one where you are just resting and relaxing.
We need to understand this correctly. Having a real holiday where you are just resting and relaxing can take any form. It need not be an expensive long trip! You can make it without much hustle and with little or even no expense at all! It is up to you to plan within the means at hand. You can simply travel to the village for a two week period. Or you can even travel to your brother’s or sister’s place. Or you can choose my favourite option, spending time with the parents at their base. This could be uncles or aunts, or close cousins and so on, for those whose parents aren’t still around. And of course, the obvious choice you have – to simply spend time at home with the family without needing to travel anywhere. This gives you the chance to sleep long, rest long and relax while watching TV, reading books and chatting with your loved ones.
Even with all these big advantages for going for holiday, many people are still afraid or reluctant to take their leave. Why? I hear that some of them think that they are so important that their section, or department or indeed the company would collapse if they went on one or two or three week long leave! That is not just old fashion and retrogressive, it is in fact very wrong thinking. No company has ever collapsed because someone went on leave. Certainly, I have not heard or read of a company crisis arising merely from the fact that someone went on holiday! We need to demystify this one very clearly. So, take your time off and save your HR and finance teams from the unnecessary build-up of provisions for your accumulated leave days!
Next time you have an opportunity to take leave, do not hesitate, just do it! If you do not get any opportunity for it, just choose any time to take leave and go on holiday even if it means staying at home to spend time with your loved ones. Everyone needs a good holiday once in a while – at least once a year or more. Go for it, reboot, relax and refresh. Good luck! n