In our culture is seems acceptable to work ourselves to death. I have found myself bragging about how many jobs I have had at once.  As though I would win an award for the most hours worked in a week. In my twenties I would work doubles regularly and one year, 20% of my income was overtime.

Some of my work places have promoted self-care, but it has been difficult to tell if the company really meant it.  The appearance is, to do a nice job of promoting taking a vacation. Many times, it seemed more like lip service.  We look out for ourselves when we take a well-earned and a well-deserved vacation.  The definition of vacation is an extended period of recreation away from home or in traveling.  Synonyms are break, time off, recess, leave, sabbatical.  We need to give ourselves a break from time to time.

In early 2000, the term called a stay-cation became popular.  A vacation spent in one’s home country rather than abroad, or one spent at home and involving day trips to local attractions.   I am starting a staycation today.  It felt like I started it Friday.  I decided to take time off for a few reasons.  One reason is that I had not taken much time off in over a year.  A second reason is that at the mental center I have accrued close to 300 hours of vacation time.  But the most important reasons I took two weeks off is that I needed a break, and I wanted to spend time with my new nephew and family.

During this staycation I am noticing that I am extra tired.  It as if my body was revved up for a year and it is now coming down out of overdrive.  I am also feeling aches and pains that I have not noticed in months.  I scheduled a massage this week.  I needed this break.  I know we all go in and out of balancing work and play, but mine had really gotten out of whack.  Are you good at balancing work and play?

I have appreciated having family around because they have gently pointed out how tired I looked and long my hours are.  They would say things like, “You leave the house at 8:00am and you don’t end your day until 7:00 or 8:00pm?” It is sometimes difficult for me to be a witness to myself and my habits. One of the nicest perks of this staycation, besides needed rest, family time, and devoting more time to Mantis, is that my dad has made repairs and upgrades to my condo.

Vacations or staycations are important.  It gives you time to rest, reflect and recharge.  It helps you take time to remember what is important.  During my staycation, I am doing one thing per day that makes me happy or is nurturing to me.  I am also reflecting on my last year.  I am reminding myself what is important.  Here is what I realized. My family, my friends, Mantis and my health and wellness are important.  Another realization I am having is that I need to look out for me.  Saying yes to vacations or staycations is saying yes to me.   When was the last time you rested, reflected, and recharged?

If you need support on balancing work and play, give us a call.