I found myself reflecting on a few things that surprised me about a working vacation. There are some definite benefits that I have experienced along the way. All of my travel and vacation during the past four-and-a-half years would qualify as working vacations, due to the nature of the work I do and the weekly deadlines I have to meet.
Could I plan ahead and double my workload in preparation to enjoy a work-free vacation? Probably. But I honestly don’t have the determination and discipline to get that far ahead of things most times.
The good news is that the benefits of a working vacation present themselves every time I do it. So, they must be part of the reason I keep on doing it! Here a few of them.
Change in Latitude, Change in Attitude
It’s those changes in latitudes,
changes in attitudes nothing remains quite the same.
With all of our running and all of our cunning,
If we couldn’t laugh, we would all go insane.
It appears Jimmy Buffett knows what he’s talking about. (Doesn’t he always?) As much as I love where we live and our life at home in North Carolina, I sometimes forget how just a little bit of change can make a whole lot of difference in my attitude.
It’s a chance to experience life from a new perspective, with new eyes. Live more. Laugh more. See the sights and explore new places. Don’t we all need more of this in our lives? I know I sure do.
The positive effects of a change in location touch every part of life. And I love that.
More Time, Less Distractions
This was very surprising to me. I am usually worried about having enough time to meet my work deadlines, both at home and while traveling. When I don’t have the routine and consistency I do at home, I get nervous. What can I say, I’m a creature of habit.
I was quickly reminded that being away from home frees me up from a lot of things that consume my time, actually leaving me more time to write (as is evidenced by several new posts on this blog for the first time since last year….)
I don’t have the responsibilities of daily life that I normally have at home. Cleaning? Nope. Cooking? Not so much. Lawn and garden? Nah. There are much less distractions and demands on my time while away.
I’ve even been able to sleep in much later than normal, while away on vacation. I don’t force myself to get up to get work done and it’s felt completely luxurious. My child normally sleeps in much later while on vacation, too, since he’s going to bed later and worn out from all of the fun he’s having. So that helps! Sleeping in hasn’t impacted the completion of my workload one bit, so that proves that there must be more time throughout the rest of the day to complete it!
Do I daydream about spending all day on the beach? Exploring the local towns without limit? Getting to know where I’m traveling to on an intimate level? Of course. But I do enough of that to satisfy my cravings, while still having time to work.
Renewed Inspiration & More to Write About
It is very beneficial to feel inspired just by simply being in the places you are vacationing in. Inspiration comes in many forms, but primarily for me it’s unending blog topics and ideas that run through my head that were not there before… and without even trying. No writer’s block here, my friends! My creativity is heightened and my desire to put pen to paper, metaphorically speaking, is much greater.
Whether it’s for my personal or professional travel blogs, I am able to soak up my surroundings and internalize the beauty and character of the places I go. I take a lot of pictures as a personal habit, but I also use pictures to capture a visual memory of places I’ve been and to immortalize the personality and ambiance of the places I’ve traveled. Those photos have come in handy on more than a few occasions for more than just personal use. And I really love looking back at them over time and remembering the things I’ve already forgotten. That in itself inspires me all over again.
Making Money While Spending It on Vacation
Working while vacationing keeps me focused on gratitude. Though every job has its quirks and annoyances, overall I mindful of how thankful I am to be able to work on my schedule and from any location.
And to make money while on vacation? Why not!
My particular job doesn’t really pay the bills (I’ve got hubby’s hard work and expertise in his field to thank for that.) It’s just a part-time endeavor for me. But, the extra income adds to our ability to enjoy the experiences that we do without guilt. And it keeps me involved in the working world in a way that I wouldn’t have been able to otherwise with a young child whose life I want to fully be part of.
Reaping the Benefits
I am constantly reminded of all of these benefits when I’m traveling—and they keep me focused on what I love doing in life—along with remembering what my true priorities really are.
A working vacation sometimes gets a bad rap, but for me it’s a combination of all the things that I love and a sense of freedom that I wouldn’t change for anything in the world.
Have you ever taken a working vacation? Did you reap any surprising benefits from it?