One of the biggest points I make at the end of every year is to really, truly take some time off. Don't get me wrong, I take holidays throughout the year as well, and I try to make my weekends as free as possible, but somehow, my head always returns to work in some way, shape or form. I find it very hard to switch off... and I know that I'm not the only one!
So how can you make sure that you take some really well needed rest time? What can you do? Here's some suggestions!
1. Block Time Off In Your Calendar:
I had to physically go into my iCal, and block off two weeks of holiday. When you work for yourself, you don't have an office you can leave, and an email you walk away from. It's always there, beckoning you. So to make things feel more "official," I've written the words: "Holiday, DONT BOOK ANY WORK IN" into my diary between the 20th of December (the day we go away to Spain for Christmas) and the 7th of January. Two full weeks off!
2. Plan Your Activities In Advance:
Might sound counter productive to get scheduling, but if I see that I've got two weeks of blank days, with nothing to do... I panic. So instead of just "winging it" I like to write down what I'd like to do, and when. But it's not work things... it's fun things! So grab your diary, and schedule in what you're going to do. When are you going to have that spa day? When are you going to explore that place you've been meaning to visit all year? What day are you going to have lunch with your friend? What day are you going to do nothing but watch Netflix all day? Write it down.
3. Put Your Phone Away
Its so hard, and I'm the first to crumble at this step, but if you can do it, put your phone away. Switch it off, log out of Facebook, delete the app off your phone if you have to! I am so addicted to my iPhone, its terrible, but the moment you put it down, everything gets better. Put it away, be in the moment.
4. Stock Up On Books
When I finished Uni, I suddenly became a massive bookworm. I'd always wanted to be a "book person" growing up, but never really got into reading. When I began to read self help/non fiction books at 21, I found my jam. I love to learn! So every Christmas, I make a big Amazon order of book I want to read. This is a fun activity, and it gets me so excited to have time where I can slob on the sofa and soak up all the knowledge!
5. Go Away
I know not everyone is lucky enough to be able to travel during the holidays, but if you can, I highly recommend it. Getting a change of scenery, and just changing up your usual routine does you so much good! I usually go home to Switzerland for a week or two at Christmas, and thats usually enough of a change for me. This year, I'm taking it to a whole new level, as Tom, my parents and I are going to Southern Spain for a week! I'm so excited for a warm Christmas, and all the sight seeing.