When you work on a vacation, is it really a vacation?
I recently went with my family on a wonderful trip to the Mayan Riviera, a beach community about 1 hour south of Cancun. A great adventure trip with snorkeling, kayaking, cave explorations and jungle ziplines. It was a perfect week except for one challenge: my blackberry. The red light was blinking. Messages were coming in. I felt a constant pressure to check to see if there was anything important. There wasn’t, but there was always that nagging feeling that I should be checking in.
When is a vacation really a vacation? As a working mom, I truly treasure spending a full week with my kids. I want to give them 100% of my attention. But that nagging red blinking light never stops. Am I a bad worker if I don’t constantly check in while out of town? It seems like everyone else does. But I feel like a bad mother when I am distracted by work even when we are across the country inside a beautiful cave learning about stalagtites and stalagmites.
Perhaps RIM (the company that makes the Blackberry) could create a blinking blue light that folks could activate when there really is an email that needs to be answered on vacation, an issue that no one else can address. Those do occur one in a while, but not often. Usually we check in on vacation because we want to feel important and our voice heard, even when we are not around. For my next trip I am going to try much harder not to pay attention to that blinking red light and really detatch. I am wishing myself luck.