The dirty little secret about time off


What are your vacation plans?

How you spend your precious time off is a natural summertime topic. When the Unstuck team recently chatted about this (staycation, mountain retreat, West Coast music blockbuster), it got us thinking about how important, critical even, it is to vacation in a way that speaks to you.

For instance, one of our team members recalled her vacation to Hawaii, where all she did was lounge. No helicopter trips or volcano scaling for her. But she knew people expected her to do those things…so she made it up. Everyone was happy, if not completely honest.

But why did she feel her vacation had to meet other people’s ideals? Better yet, how can we all feel good about taking the vacation that appeals to us instead of what we think we’re suppose to enjoy?

Here are four tips to help you vacation in your own best interest:

  • Remember: The purpose of a vacation is to feel refreshed and satisfied at the end of it. If spending beyond your means to say you’ve been to Paris doesn’t achieve that, it’s not the right vacation for you right now.
  • Regret not: Of the holiday choices before you, which one would you most lament not doing on your time off? Make it happen if you can.
  • Realize: People aren’t all that affected by your vacation. They may comment on it. They may have opinions. But they aren’t dwelling on it. Mostly, they’re happy you took one. Only you are keeper of your vacation experience, so you might as well do what matters to you.
  • Revel in it: Social media, with all its carefully curated photos, has the potential to make us feel a little ashamed of not taking a proper vacation…unless you redefine what a proper vacation is. Post photos of the dresser you refinished during your week off. Publicly thank your brother for being a great host. Brag about how organized your house is or how many miles you ran. Your friends will be impressed by how honestly you put yourself out there.