What I learned on holiday

February 18, 2010

The last time I wrote, I was about to go on a holiday and told you I’d be back in late January. I’ve been back one month now (hello, February) with a bit of writer’s block and have been busy enjoying life offline (remember that?). It’s encouraging to see some of you have kept visiting despite the post drought!

So, I got back from my holiday about a month ago feeling refreshed, rested and I am determined to hang onto that feeling. I remembered how important it is to take a mental break – time to clear your head, regain good headspace and just ‘be’. I think this is important, not only for the sake of your mental health, but also to allow yourself time to really think things through, forget about what you need to work on next, and find some inspiration.

On a related note, The Harvard Business Review have a good article on how taking ‘creative sabbaticals’ to give your mind a break helps increase productivity and improve your mental state. They use the example of Stefan Sagmeister, a Designer who takes a creative sabbatical every 7 years, for 1 year at a time. In this year, Sagmeister does not work. Instead, he dedicates time to finding things that inspire him by travelling, talking with people and so on. For the average person, 1 year off work is probably not economically feasible, but I do like the concept of having time dedicated to do the things you normally wouldn’t get time to do. Time to think.

On a smaller scale, I am going to try to dedicate some time each day to relax, clear my head, read, research and think.

What do you do to maintain a good state of mind? If you have any tips or ideas I’d love to hear them.


  1. Hi Sarah,

    This is actually my relaxation… I take time every night for me. I read blogs, I write blogs, I learn I think… Love it.

    Now… BACK TO WORK! 🙂



  2. Good to see you are back. And looking forward to your posts again.
    For me, I exercise and eat well. And when it all feels like too much, in the moment, I just stop and remember to breathe. And realize, only if I do that will I accomplish everything I want to do. I can’t do it by getting stressed out.
    In general, there is a great deal I want to accomplish personally, professionally, and with my blog. When I’m just too tired, I listen to myself and simply get some sleep and realize everything – my blog, my readers, Twitter,etc.- will all still be there tomorrow.

  3. Thanks for sharing your approaches, Dan and Paul.

    Paul: I think your point about perspective is equally important as eating well, exercising and dedicating time to be creative/get things done.

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