Holidays are for unplugging, but unplugging can be hard when you carry your work around on your device in your pocket. To keep work-related emails and messages at bay, adjust your “out of office” reply.
Photo by Pixabay.
Technology, culture, whatever you want to blame it on, work-life balance has become increasingly difficult to achieve. Many of us check in with work occasionally even when we’re supposed to be unplugged and that only encourages coworkers or clients to bug you when you should be relaxing.
Even if you plan to occasionally check in, tell people you will have limited email access and to expect a reply on, or shortly after, your return.
I had one client embarking on her first holiday in years, but going off the grid completely wasn’t an option. She told me she was planning to check her email “only” twice a day.
Telling people she was reachable, however, would only invite them to contact her — and expect a reply. So she made sure her out-of-office let everyone know she’d have limited email access and when to expect a response.
Once you do this, you’re free to set up your own schedule without feeling guilty if you don’t reply to every email every single day. It’s a simple tip, and it’s not even lying, exactly. It’s just vague.
Ideally, you will limit your access to email, but even if you don’t (let’s say you want to check it so you’re not overwhelmed with emails when you get back), no one has to know, allowing you stay in control of your own schedule.