Anxious about having time off? You’re not alone.

As a self-care advocate, I try my best to prioritise my own self-care. I’ll confess I sometimes completely forget, and end up tired out and experiencing what Thich Nhat Hanh calls ‘radio non stop thinking.’ But most of the time I remember what makes me feel good, like yoga and mediatation and reading and running. And going on holiday. Anyone who knows me personally knows what a life long love affair I’ve had with travel and exploring different parts of the world. And in two weeks time I’m going to Sydney Australia to visit a very dear friend for two weeks. I am super excited.

And yet…

I feel a tinge of guilt. I’ve just had a week off at Christmas, I have a business to run, and I spent such a lot of money buying the flight let alone the costs of being out there. Radio non-stop thinking is tuned in to feelings of guilt around my holiday.

But I know, from tapping into self-care strategies for many years now, that there is zero point in feeling this way. I must remind myself in these moments that self-care, which includes for me taking time to go on holiday as much as possible, is the thing that keeps me alive. It reminds me of Howard Thurman’s quote:

‘Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.’

The other piece to this is to look at the way we all show up when we’re actually having our time off. I know I’m not the only person to find myself mid downtime telling myself ‘I must have a good time, I must make the most of this time off, oh my goodness I must enjoy myself I must enjoy myself…’ And obviously when I’m thinking that way the last thing I’m doing is enjoying myself.

So the permission here is to let go and be present in the moment during your time away from work. If you don’t feel 100% amazing all the time on your holidays that’s ok, that’s being human. Presence, stillness and getting out of your head and away from radio non-stop thinking are the best ways to create that lovely self-caring space that’s so very important.

With love, Hannah

Photo by Sasha • on Unsplash

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