What is the point of just three days – yes, THREE days! – away? Might as well not bother; take three days off, stop and flop at home. But I’m back and boosted from a mini-holiday and it’s worked wonderfully well for me.
Here’s why a microwave holiday is worth the effort of packing, pushing off and then coming back fairly soon afterwards!
I am very busy at the moment for which I am exceedingly grateful. You have to be when you’re freelance. You never know when the next bit of work is coming so you have your answering machine set to say yes all the time. Whatever you’re offering, the answer is yes. Whatever you want, the answer is yes. Consequently holidays become something of a juggling act. My partner is also self employed – a musician which makes a perfect match for me as a writer because we both have the “can’t say no” neurosis of the self-employed. So he understands I can’t always get away for two weeks at holiday time. Or even one.
However we’ve just returned from a simply glorious break at Portmeirion, North Wales, (see photo above) and both agreed it was probably one of our best ever holidays. A short burst of holiday in the midst of a very busy time has given me just the right amount of downtime to recharge my batteries and return refreshed and raring to go. Too long away and I find re-entry awfully difficult. A short sharp shock is much better for the system.
We compensate for our inability to ever take a fortnight’s break by taking lots of little ones instead. Minibreaks, weekends away or mini weeks means you always have something on the horizon to look forward to. A quick walk away from work for a few days makes it much easier to tackle on your return. It’s also why you should always take a lunch break but I’ll write about that another time.
Now that employed workers in the UK and EU have a statutory right to four weeks’ paid holiday it can be tricky to fit them all in! Nice problem to have of course – and I have much sympathy for Stateside workers and others in the developed and developing world who don’t have this luxury. Twenty days can easily last you the whole year if you stretch them out and add them to public holidays here and there, tag them onto weekends, take a few Fridays or Mondays off.
When I was employed I found two weeks holiday a tough adjustment to make – the long (to me) break was wonderful; the coming back a lot less so! Isn’t it better, like a show you’ve really enjoyed, to leave a resort wanting more rather than secretly thinking, I wish this was over as I’m bored and I can’t wait to get home!
With microwave holidays you learn how to unwind fast. You have to. You can’t ease gently into it or give yourself a few days to relax – your holiday IS a few days. Which you have to make the very most of, soaking up every minute, living in the moment and not thinking, bugger, we have to leave soon I wish we were staying longer.
I thought I would be down, fed up and annoyed at having to come back so soon after going away but not a bit of it. I feel fine and happy to get straight back in the saddle as I did this morning. We were also incredibly lucky with the weather! Got the sunshine with the sea breeze as a bonus.
My break may be over now but I’m already planning the next one. If we went the traditional holiday route and had just returned from a two to three-week Summer vacation there’d be nothing to look forward to till Christmas. But we’ll go away again soon. Planning can be as much fun as going. Enjoy your break/s whenever you can get away! And thanks for reading.