Staying Productive on Vacation Without Becoming Resentful

3 Key Questions to Ask Yourself


- by Productivity Expert Susan Sly | 4 mins 6 secs read

Summer, holidays, kids, life, there are so many things that can pull at our time and although some might say that these are merely distractions, as a mother of five, with several businesses, I refuse to call my children ‘distractions.’  The reality is that often our goals are larger than the amount of time we have to dedicate at any given moment.  This is why I observe people say things like, ‘I will do it when the kids go back to school.’  Unfortunately, business does not run on the school calendar and some of the people we work with are not operating with the same life demands.

Recently, I was interviewed for a magazine article.  The subject centered around how employees, and business owners alike, could truly unplug during a vacation.  Unplugging is a phenomenal concept and all too often, I have seen people confuse a few days of non-availability with putting a business down altogether.  Conversely, I have friends, one in particular who comes to mind, who is expanding his business concept, and that has become a 24/7 affair, one that is stressing his health and his marriage.

In a perfect world, we would be able to pick and choose when we work however the reality is that although we do not have to be ‘on’ all of the time, and we do not have to be slaves to the demands on our time, if we want to achieve anything, we must take some form of action.

I teach my students that there are only three types of activities:

  1. Those that move us toward our dreams.
  2. Those that move us away from our dreams.
  3. Those that allow us to dream.


LobsterAs I write this, I am in Northern Maine, at a cottage overlooking the ocean.  Chris, the kids, and I, decided last year, to head to New England for a week to relax, play, and get away from the Scottsdale heat.  During this time, there are several items that cannot be ignored for the entire week.  These include some pressing legal contracts that only Chris and I can deal with, a book revision where I am the author, and a slew of other items.  That being said, categorizing these items has been incredibly helpful so that I maintain perspective and not become resentful.

While at the cottage, I am waking up early.  That is my time to journal, meditate and take some time to dream.  It is during these meditative periods that my ideas flow.  After only two days, I have clarity; I have done a deep dive on where I performed well and where I went slight off-track.  I also took time to ask myself the key question, ‘Susan – if you keep on going like you are going, will you reach your 2017 objectives?’  Taking time to go within, search, be accountable to ourselves, and course correct is essential if we are going to make progress.

Knowing that I was going to have more time to do this than I might at home when we have to get kids to school and be ‘somewhere’ at a certain time,’ I made the concerted decision to do a mid-year check-in with myself.  Inherently I know that if I want to finish this year strong, I will have to stay focused and candidly, and I am never afraid to be real with you, I did get off course and allowed myself to become distracted in one certain area.  I am fully aware that if I do not become more disciplined, I will not achieve my objective in this category.

Fireworks shopWhile I am at the cottage, in between hunting for rocks to make the perfect pet rocks, looking for crabs in tidal pools, throwing the football on the beach, and yes, I confess to you – shopping for fireworks to set off during the 4th, I have also scheduled a few select sales calls.  These calls will take me closer to my dreams and I decided, before I left, that I would do them.  I also explained to my children, the importance of the calls and set time boundaries with the people.  I only turned my phone on one hour before the calls in case the client cancelled.  This allowed me to fully be present with my kids and achieve a sense of accomplishment toward what we desire as a family

The category in which I refuse to participate is anything that takes us away from our dreams.  We are decidedly not watching television while we are here.  I really do not know what is happening on the news.  We are not overeating although we did sample some locally handcrafted goat cheese from an artisan down the road and balancing some indulgence with plenty of activity.

Many people return from vacation exhausted, feeling overweight, mentally foggy, and basically in the exact opposite state as they intended.  If you want to return from a holiday feeling rested, purposeful, energized, and focused, then I would coach you to fully be aware of how you are choosing to spend your time.  As long as you are willing to question which category your actions fall into, and limit the things which move you away from your dreams, you will be much more likely to return in a place where you are further ahead than you were when you left.

susan sly work-life balance expert and speakerSusan Sly is a bestselling author, keynote speaker, certified NLP practitioner, coach, and trauma recovery specialist.  Susan specializes in helping people become more productive so they can lead ridiculously fulfilling lives.  She is the mother of five and has been working in human potential for over two decades.


OYL Sales AcademyWould You Like to Work with Susan?

Susan’s class – OYL Sales Academy begins on September 12th.  In this course, Susan will teach you how to become more adept at selling using NLP (neuro linguistic programming) techniques and create more certainty in the selling process.  This class is already over 50% sold out.  This is the last time, Susan will teach this course live and you will want to participate to benefit from the energizing atmosphere that comes from live coaching, interaction, and accountability.

Register today.





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