As I approach a two week holiday, I think it’s always worthwhile reflecting on how we look forward to that holiday, but spend the week before we go and first week back working harder than ever to make sure everything is ‘ship shape’.
But why do we do that – is it some sense of indispensability?
Leisure time is a precious commodity, it is finite, there is only so much of our week/month/year that is allocated to it whilst we are working. So it fascinates me that our (my!) behaviour is to flog ourselves into the ground in the build up to and return from, a holiday.
A recent study put forward the theory that as human beings we do need some structure and purpose in our lives, so having infinite leisure time is possibly not as attractive as it sounds or appears. That’s probably why golf courses, yoga classes, gyms and other leisure orientated activities are so well populated – as we have more leisure time available, we use those activities to replace the structure and purpose our work provided for many years. The study also put forward the concept of ‘return on leisure’, in a similar fashion to the law of diminishing returns i.e. the more leisure time we have, the less enjoyment it gives us.
So, does that indicate that having a specific point at which we stop working and try to replace all that time with leisure activities is fraught with danger? Possibly, but not always. Most of us do like a destination and retirement dates are a classic part of our social fabric, but that does not mean that these things cannot evolve.
We find we are increasingly helping clients to plan a transition from full time work through a phase (possibly quite a few years) of part time or reduced hours working, before we fully shed the shackles of employment or our business. That’s probably why we continue to see strong demand for help from clients and potential clients from the team here at T&R.
And the enjoyment we have, from devising ever more creative plans and methods for clients to enjoy a rich and fulfilling life, doing the things they have always dreamt of doing and coming back to tell us all about them!
Have a great weekend and if you are going away at half term (not far away now), start planning for the break now so you don’t end up needing another one a week after you get back!!!