Going on a honeymoon is the perfect way for couples to spend time with each other and relax. For you that might mean lounging on the beach in a remote location or experiencing new foods from different cultures. But when the time actually comes, you may find yourself worrying about work or scrambling to find a Wi-Fi connection to check your emails.
Bringing work with you while on a honeymoon can make you feel anxious or distressed. It can also make your significant other feel flustered as your attention is elsewhere. Here we’ll look at simple ways you can enjoy a honeymoon and not worry about work.
Have you ever been unable to concentrate on a task because of unfinished work? The reason is because of a phenomenon known as the Zeigarnik effect. The effect was observed by psychologist Bluma Zeigarnik when her professor noticed that waiters in a cafe were able to recollect incomplete tabs better than paid orders.
The Zeigarnik effect suggests that tasks left undone would remain in the back of your mind – a distraction that would make it difficult to enjoy your break. Finish off any tasks on your to-do list before leaving on your honeymoon. If there are any remaining items, leave a handover document so your co-workers know what to do.
The Zeigarnik effect can still rear its head in full force for seemingly minor unfinished work. One way to reduce the effect is to completely immerse yourself in another activity. It’s difficult to think about a report if you’re doing a rigorous activity instead like hiking or skiing.
Having something planned also keeps you from drifting back into work. If you start feeling bored, you may be tempted to check your emails. One email leads to another and suddenly you find yourself reviewing reports and making phone calls back to the office.
Plan a loose itinerary with your partner that also includes immersive activities that the two of you can partake in. If you plan to go abroad, remember to schedule an appointment with a travel doctor for any vaccinations you might need.
The Internet has made it easier than ever to connect with people around the world. Even seemingly remote locations now offer Wi-Fi as an incentive for travellers to remain connected. The downside is it can make it difficult to enjoy your honeymoon. Your employer may reach out with an email or a co-worker might need some help to finish a project.
You’ll have a much more refreshing honeymoon if you establish boundaries ahead of time. Let your employer or clients know that you’ll be off the grid for the duration of your break and that you won’t be online. Most will be understanding.
If you absolutely need to check email then set a clear limit for the time you spend on work. For example, limit your email usage to 30 minutes a day.
Another way to enjoy your honeymoon is to recognise the value of time away from work. Free time not only gives us an opportunity to relax but also moments to bond with others and explore interests – both of which are essential to our well-being. In fact, a study published in the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology found that people feel better mentally and physically on the weekends.
Many of us are so used to packing every minute of the day with work that it almost feels like a waste if we’re not doing anything productive. It may sound counterintuitive but scheduling free time can actually make you more productive at work as a result.
Part of the reason why so many people are hesitant to completely switch off comes from the fear of an immense workload that will wait on your return. An empty inbox before leaving on vacation could suddenly be filled with hundreds of new emails that demand your attention.
Ask a colleague to prepare a short report on any urgent tasks. That will help you quickly get back up to speed and you’ll know how to prioritise your time. Another option is to consider hiring a virtual assistant for help on minor tasks to reduce your workload. The better you plan, the more prepared you’ll be when you get back.
Kym Wallis, the founding director of Higher Ranking has over 15 years of advertising sales, digital strategy, and business development experience. He is currently working as Digital Adviser for TravelVax.