I have a pile of vacation to use up before March 31st. I thought about taking a week off and, trust me, it was pretty tempting. A week to play, try new recipes, sleep in, go for runs in the middle of the afternoon, meet my mom for lunch and just not think about work. Nothing to complain about there.
Instead, I opted for taking seven Fridays off.
Typically, I prefer big chunks of time off but, for some reason, the idea of having four day weeks for almost two months was pretty appealing. So today is the first day of my first four day week. Pretty freaking exciting!
By noon, I was already starting to second-guess my decision.
First of all, I found out about a fabulous videoconference being offered by Dave Hingsburger, an amazing disability advocate. It's called Pride and Prejudice: Getting Past Shame, Moving Into Rights. I would love to attend but guess when it's being offered? That's right - this Friday.
Then I got involved in a discussion about how to revamp our system for tracking staff training. It's a discussion that is long overdue and a lot of decisions need to be made in order to develop a system that will be effective, meet all of my requirements as the Quality Control girl and be easy for staff to update. No time to finish the discussion until, you guessed it, Friday.
I have to reschedule a CPR refresher that staff missed because of last week's snow day. The only dates that work for everyone are Fridays.
When I have a week off, I find it really easy to just waltz out the door and not look back.
I'm discovering that taking one day off a week may prove to be a challenge. When you're already used to working Fridays, it's easier to be convinced to come in to the office...just for a bit.
A few weeks back, I wrote about life life balance - trying to balance all of the people, interests and activities in my life. I'm guessing that the next seven weeks will be more of a work life balance struggle for me. Do I preserve my time off, refusing to come in on a Friday even if it means missing important meetings or key training opportunities? Or should I be willing to come in on days off if it means learning something new or being part of important decisions?
I want to stick to my guns and not set foot in the office on a Friday until my vacation runs out. And yet, people who see the world in black and white drive me batty so I should probably strive to be a little more flexible in my approach rather than walking around refusing to budge on the Friday thing.
On the other hand, it wouldn't be too hard to be convinced to come in every Friday because there will always be something that just HAS to get done...
Balance is never an easy thing to achieve, especially when new, unexpected and often attractive variables are thrown in to the mix. I think I'll try taking the yoga approach: flexibility, strength and balance. Flexibility to adapt to unexpected changes + strength to stand up and say no when necessary + balance to make sure I don't fall too far on either side of the work/life line.
Wish me luck!