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Hello and welcome! It’s good to be here… the first blog for our newly merged business Space2BE. Most of you will either be on holiday, preparing to go, or wishing you were, so reading this might not be top of your priorities, however, we’d invite you to stay in this space a little longer – our August thoughts might be closer to yours than you think…

We were talking in the office about the topic of our first August blog and landed on the theme of holidays, specifically, how us busy professionals tend to prepare (or not) for them and whether we were ‘present’ when we were actually on them! Helping our clients achieve ‘corporate wellness’ is a core part of our people consultancy business so we are always interested to hear how people remain sustainably and holistically ‘well’ integrating their professional lives with their personal lives.

Personally I have been on my own ‘wellness’ journey on and off for 7 years as I strive to feel great whilst performing at high levels in my day job which often involves long hours. This has comprised of lots of holidays involving yoga, detoxing, fitness challenges, meditation, holistic health experiences and even the odd “week long boot camp” which I have to say, I haven’t repeated in a hurry! As many of your know, the real challenge is maintaining these positive behaviours so they become part of your daily life. This August, I have decided to do just that! I am journaling my ‘wellness’ every day alongside work and I look forward to seeing some positive results. Meanwhile my business partner Carrie Stockton, is enjoying her well deserved holiday in the Californian sunshine and has shared with us her reflections on her own busyness leading up to this summer break. At one point I know she had anxiety about even going, thinking perhaps it wasn’t the right time to go away… but really… with the pace of our global economy – is there ever a good time to go away?

“Today I caught hubby relaxing in the garden with his nose in the San Francisco guide book – was I pleased he was preparing for our amazing trip? – not really if I’m honest, more a bit jealous that he was enjoying a quiet moment in the sunshine and I was stuck with my nose in my laptop until the early hours of every morning this week worrying that it wasn’t a good time to depart.

What do we fear is going to happen in our absence? What we should be more afraid of is NOT taking the time out to re-charge our batteries, so we are fit to focus when we return, to what we know won’t just crumble in our absence.

So, as wellness is so important on our agenda at Space2BE – and I know I need to be a great role model for my clients (and my family), this year I have decided I am going to completely switch off on my holiday. The laptop is staying at home. I want to come back with memories of a fantastic time in California with my family and feel ready to throw myself completely into the launch of our new business – renewed and re-energised”

I’m pleased to say that as I finish off this blog, Carrie is switching off as I haven’t received any emails or texts – hooray and guess what – the wheels haven’t fallen off – in fact on the contrary, we have received two new client orders this week already – based on the good work that has gone before.

Having heard from Carrie … we’d like you to consider:

    1. Are you guilty of working yourself in to exhaustion before you head off on your holidays? If so, what impact does this have on you and your holiday companions? What is this behaviour driven by? How much of it is fear and fear of what?
    2. What might you do to set yourself up for greater ‘pre-holiday’ success? How early would you need to start planning this? What is it going to take for you to change your patterns?
    3. What are the benefits of completely switching off and being present for your well-earned break? What are the dangers of not giving yourself this permission?

Holidays are for rest and recuperation. Fatigue due to sleeplessness costs UK employers between £115million and £240 million per year in workplace accidents (Health and Safety Executive). Holidays are also an opportunity to “de-stress” from the ever-increasing day job. Did you know that a third of the private sector report stress-related absence has increased over the past year?; “Stress is most commonly attributed to high workloads, as in previous years. This year, however, high workloads are even more commonly blamed for stress, with 58% ranking this in the top three causes of stress compared with 45% in 2011 and 49% and 2010.” CIPD Research 2012

Your holiday is YOUR time. Enjoy the excitement of looking forward to it, the journey to it and the experience of it. Be in the now!

Thanks to Carrie, for sharing your experiences. Look out for our next blog in 2 weeks time when a client of ours, Jessica Silva – Product Director at Vielife shares with us her own pre-holiday experiences and makes decisions to change.

Whatever your plans at home or away, we hope you find yourself some ‘you’ space during this holiday season and optimize your energy ready for a positive, motivated return.

Karen Griffin & Carrie Stockton Managing Partners, Space2BE.

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