A Professional Development Vacation

A Professional Development Vacation

I recently spent time in southeastern Utah exploring Arches and Canyonlands National Parks. The vast expanse of land and spotty Wifi services in that part of the country allow time for thought and reflection on the busyness of life in the Northeast.

Spending time hiking and exploring could be categorized as “time off” or “vacation,” but I believe it’s also an investment in one’s professional development. There’s a lot of empty space. And I’m not referring to the miles of wilderness alone. It’s also a matter of soaking up those peaceful moments of creating open space in my own mind--which is usually continually cluttered with work-thoughts, planning, researching, and writing.

Reflection and a lack of busyness allows the brain to be restored; there are many cognitive benefits in recreation and leisure

In Utah, my hiking days began before 4am. But the time and space that this exercise provided me for appreciating the earth, enjoying the quiet, and being awestruck by the enormity of God’s creation allowed me the quiet time to reflect on life-work balance and how it can be a valuable asset to developing my business and career.

Take the time to do something this summer that allows your brain to rest. So many of us (especially entrepreneurs) tend to feel guilty about taking some time off. Please don’t. When you take your days off this summer, refer to it as professional development rather than vacation. It will serve you well.