Whether you’re high up in your company, are a hard-working freelancer or entrepreneur, or are striving to climb the ranks in your workplace, we know that you’re pushing every single day to get things done and your personal lifestyle matches this. Whether you’re off on an adventure, a planned vacation, or a new business trip, no one can say that you aren’t making the most of life.
Yet while all that can be great, that isn’t all there is to life. As we’re sure you’ve experienced, there can be joy in the calmer times as well, and taking things a bit more simply (and we don’t mean a planned retreat in the mountains) can make for a wonderful day, especially if you have a nice place you haven’t enjoyed to the fullest yet. Sometimes watching TV, napping on the couch, and spending some time online is just what you need.
Here are some reasons you should consider taking a bit more unplanned time for yourself:
You Need to Recharge
People aren’t built, mentally or physically, to be constantly working every day of every week. In truth, your productivity starts to go down after 35-45 hours of work each week, and if rates are kept above that level for extended periods of time you will start to see negative productivity, and you’ll just find yourself in a vicious cycle of correcting your own mistakes.
Your own body will tell you if you need to rest and recharge, even if you are guzzling eight cups of coffee a day. Listen to it. That can mean taking some time to rest with a cup of lemonade or hot cocoa (season dependent), taking an extra couple of naps during the day, or working on something intellectual that has no stakes attached to it like your normal work would.
Inspiration Often Comes When You Aren’t Looking for It
Often it is in the times where you aren’t focused on something where it comes most clearly into focus for you, especially when the “it” in question is a problem you’ve been working on or thinking about for some time now.
How often has this happened to you? While remaining focused is a virtue in many situations, it doesn’t always lend itself to thinking outside the box. A long shower and some time on your phone might do you better than a day grinding out ideas at the office, so see if you can change scenery for yourself and let your resting mind sort out your worries.
You Probably Have Everything You Need
We live in a golden age of entertainment. There are more TV shows than anyone can possibly watch, streaming service can easily take a large chunk out of your day, the internet can provide you with plenty to do, and so many other opportunities exist we couldn’t list them all. And if you’re willing to part with a bit of cash, you can set up a home theater that’s better than going to the movies for just a few grand.
Not only that, but with other modern conveniences, you can bring everything to you, why would you want to go anywhere else while you recharge, especially if you’re someone who needs to get away from people occasionally?
Quality Time Isn’t Always Exciting
Everything you do with family and friends doesn’t have to be out in the world having an adventure. It doesn’t even need to be especially memorable. Instead, you might find that the best times for the important conversations with your loved ones are when you appear open, free, and available to talk to.
There are plenty of amazing things you can do at home with the people around you, from a fun night with board games to a nice movie night inside. Whatever might stimulate great conversation and a comfortable environment can lead to a perfect day by a different set of standards than what you’re used to. We hope you don’t ignore the opportunity.
It Sets Expectations
If you are constantly out and about or ready to answer your work phone at a moment’s notice, it’s going to create the precedent that you can be disturbed, or your time isn’t valuable. It might even give the impression that you don’t think your time is valuable, which is the opposite of what you want.
No matter what might be required, we recommend that you schedule some time each week or at least every other week to be your time, without outside interference. This is easier if you work in an office, but a quick email setting those boundaries (politely, of course) can set things up easily, especially if you provide some notice. Unless lives or careers depend on you picking up your phone in an emergency, it should be respected. Other people’s problems can wait occasionally.
We don’t want you to change your lifestyle, and with the success you’ve had already we doubt you want to either. You can certainly take time off too far. Yet we hope you’ve thought about perhaps taking a nice day every once in a while, to rest up and create a change of pace. A balanced life often produces greater results than one with your nose to the grindstone, and we hope as a result of reading this article you revisit your calendar, priorities, and schedule in some more time for yourself and your relationships.