Last week my wife and I spent a few days holidaying in a lovely spot on the Argyll Coast.
It was rural, rugged and rainy but we were fortunate enough to be cosseted within the very impressive Portavadie Marina resort and were able to while away the hours at our leisure.
But perhaps the greatest thing about our time away was we were completely disconnected from the world by dint of the fact the mobile phone signal in that part of the world is virtually non-existent.
We were forced to set our phones aside and enjoy our time away from our desks.
No calls, no messages and no work emails to contend with for a few days was just the tonic.
More than that, after a busy few weeks leading up to my time off, it was what I needed.
But it was only because circumstance forced me to make a clean break that I did so.
I have been on holidays before where the work phone has stayed at my side and I’ve kept a furtive check on what’s happening sometimes thousands of miles from where I am in that moment.
It makes no sense, but I know I am far from alone in checking in.
Why do we do this to ourselves?
Life is stressful enough without putting an artificial burden on our leisure time in this way.
And by failing to take the opportunity to relax, to swim, to walk, to eat good food, to indulge in a beer or a glass of wine and immerse ourselves in inspiring places then we may well, conversely, be doing our work a disservice.
That’s because tired and jaded employees are less productive and more likely to make mistakes than those coming through the door fresh and alert and ready to work.
In fact, that’s the fundamental reason why holidays are a protected right for workers.
It is legally mandated time off to recharge the batteries and to ensure you are in the best possible shape to deal with the rigours of the workplace when you return.
It might dent my ego somewhat but the truth is my workplace did not collapse into shambles last week because I was not sat at my desk.
It carried on without me as it always has and I knew it would.
That’s a lesson I’m committed to taking on board- and I hope others do too.
And now I’m fully refreshed, it is time to get back to fighting the good fight…