The keys to disconnecting from work
Holidays are for rest and enjoyment, not for dwelling on work responsibilities.
One of the most interesting contradictions that people face is the work-life balance. We dream of holidays throughout the year, but when the time finally comes to enjoy them, we can’t disconnect from our work responsibilities. Cinthya Molina, psychologist at SHA Wellness Clinic explain. “This is because we lead a very fast-paced lifestyle”, she says. “The body ends up getting used to this frenetic pace, to hyperstimulation and multitasking and, when we stop, cortisol levels, which is the stress hormone, are still very high. This makes us feel upset and anxious. Even if the stressful stimulus disappears, the body needs three or four days to get back to normal”.
Muscle strain in the neck and back, problems falling asleep and headaches are some of the symptoms that many suffer during the first few days of their holidays and are the most common warning signs that both body and mind need a rest. To make sure you don’t make it to your holidays too burnt out, Cinthya stresses how “important it is to correctly manage your time in the workplace. If your job allows it, it is essential to learn to delegate work. This way, you can have some personal space and use it to exercise self-care. It is also important not to isolate yourself. Even if you have a lot of work to do, don’t forget to take breaks with your team or have lunch with your colleagues. Social isolation in the workplace increases the feeling of loneliness and makes you feel more burnt out. And of course, stick to the timetable. Since the start of the pandemic, but particularly with the rise in working from home, we live hyper-connected lives, which isn’t synonymous with being available all day. The boundary that used to separate work and personal life is blurring and this makes it difficult to switch off”.
Disconnecting during the holidays is a vital necessity that allows you to reboot body and mind so that we can go back to the office with your batteries recharged rather than running on empty. To switch off, the expert recommends “staying away from electronic devices as much as possible because they are the tool that connects us to the work environment. So, during the holidays, don’t check your work email. And if your boss sends you an email or a WhatsApp, you should know that legally you have the right to ignore it and not reply. Also, eat a healthy diet based mainly on seasonal fruit and vegetables. Avoid alcohol, stimulants, sugars and ultra-processed foods because they create a lot of mental fog. Establish a good sleep pattern, because rest is essential when it comes to reducing stress levels. Do activities that make you feel good and spend time on your hobbies: read, play sports, go for a walk on the beach or in nature and enjoy your family and friends. Finally, have a rough idea of what you would like to do on your holiday, but don’t over-plan it because trying to stick to a detailed, minute-by-minute schedule also causes anxiety”.
For more tips on how to enjoy a healthy holiday, Click here