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Home > Blog > Eat Your Broccoli and Go to the Beach
Out of Our Minds
Wednesday, March 22, 2006 10:01 AM
Eat Your Broccoli and Go to the Beach
Anita Sharpe on Creativity

For most of my career, I have taken very few vacations. If I ever took a two-week, back-to-back break, I don't recall it. And like many people, I have used this as a bragging point.

Not long ago, as a new investor in Worthwhile was filling out the paperwork, I mentioned how few vacations I take. She momentarily stopped writing: 'I don't invest in people who don't take breaks. It's the same as not eating right or not exercising.'

She's right, and I'm about to take my first break in years that is more than a long weekend. Soon, I plan to work up to a full week -- maybe even two.

I must confess, in our working culture of 'eat lunch, be lunch,' writing this feels a little weird. But as Fortune points out in a current column: 'With innovation now our main competitive strength, creativity is crucial for anyone who wants to move up. But it's really, really hard, if not impossible, for the human brain to come up with fresh new ideas when its owner is overworked, overtired, and stressed out.'

What are your thoughts on the perfect number of breaks -- during the year and during the day? What constitutes a real break?





6 comments

P. J. - 3/23/2006 10:58:09 PM
What's wrong with you people? Three days to get out of work mode?! My experience is really different. I often head to a place in the mountains on long weekends -- it's a 90 minute drive from the office. Before I even make the turn off the main road, I'm in a completely different state of mind. I wonder why some people take days (or 2 weeks -- please!) to recharge and others can reframe themselves in less than two hours.
Paul Gladen - 3/22/2006 6:13:10 PM
I take vacations regularly including at least three one week vacations per year. I live by the rule of always having the next vacation planned and booked.
Douglas E. Welch - 3/22/2006 3:41:00 PM
It seems to take a bare minimum of 3 days before I let go of 'work mode'. It is almost like the lifting of a weight when it happens.

By the end of 2 full weeks I am ready to get back to work and usually jotting down ideas and plans before I even get back to the office.
Douglas E. Welch - 3/22/2006 2:26:17 PM
It seems to take a bare minimum of 3 days before I let go of 'work mode'. It is almost like the lifting of a weight when it happens.

By the end of 2 full weeks I am ready to get back to work and usually jotting down ideas and plans before I even get back to the office.
Douglas E. Welch - 3/22/2006 2:20:32 PM
It seems to take a bare minimum of 3 days before I let go of 'work mode'. It is almost like the lifting of a weight when it happens.

By the end of 2 full weeks I am ready to get back to work and usually jotting down ideas and plans before I even get back to the office.
jack - 3/22/2006 1:57:11 PM
One week and your mind is still at the office. Two weeks (with no laptop, cell phone,etc) is a real vacation.


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