It’s Okay To Get Away

Unfortunately, my view isn’t as good as the one above. But right now, I am sitting in my hotel room with a view of the Columbia River, and watching the sun set in the horizon. On top of that, I have my beautiful wife sitting next to me and we don’t have a six year old boy running around with us (he is at the grandparents house doing plenty of that).

Yes, I took the day off from school today and my wife and I are on a little vacation; probably our last one for a while as we welcome baby #2 this summer. But, this vacation was more than just getting away, it was strategic. As most of you who are educators, you know that this time of the school year can be stressful. Kids see that summer is within reach and teachers are tired (rightly so). Everyone is ready for summer break!

So yes, this vacation was very strategic, but it wasn’t because I wanted to get away from the busyness of school…….

It has taken me a few years as an administrator to be “okay” with missing a day or two during the school year for a vacation. But, as we were driving, I started to realize the importance of taking time off. The most important lesson I am learning is that it gives me the opportunity to recharge. Sometimes when we are so immersed in our work, we don’t realize how much energy we are expending and how we are stretching ourselves thin. It makes us tired and an ineffective leader. Taking a break, even if it is just a day or two, gives us the chance to slow down and take a step back.

What I am also learning as I am doing this is that by recharging, it not only benefits me, but it will also benefit the people that I work with as they will now have a recharged leader, and not one who is burnt out. Our teachers, students, and parents need us at our best. That is the nature of the beast and what we signed up for.

So yes, I do feel a little bad that I took today off. But, I also know that by doing that, I can go back to work after the long weekend feeling refreshed and ready to finish the year strong! Leaders, if you haven’t taken a “break,” in a while, I would strongly encourage you to do it! It can be a day or even a few hours. Be strategic about it, plan it out if you have to, but, don’t just power through. You will be better for it and so will the people you serve.

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