Feeling overworked? It may be time for a vacation. And this type of getaway involves putting away your phone, computer, or tablet for a few days. According to research by Forbes, 68% of people work on vacation and have a hard time detaching. This can lead to a reduction in happiness and effectiveness, especially at work. In the case of being a hospitalist, you are likely always on the go, and emails as well as important messages can start stacking up easily. The more behind you seem to get, the more time you will need to spend on catching up. This creates a certain pressure to be available, and expectations grow to an all-time high.
To combat this, it’s important to unplug while you are away on vacation. There is a common misconception that you can become more stressed while stepping away from work, however, this has actually been proven to be the opposite. When employees take time off and don’t feel a sense of urgency to check in with work related tasks and communications, they ultimately come back much more refreshed and energized to tackle their workload. Intentionally taking time away to reduce the intensity of your job has many benefits.
Ways to Detach
- Schedule time away and plan for it. By looking at your calendar at a glance and planning out your vacations ahead of time, you can book time off well in advance. This not only gives you something to look forward to, but also allows you plenty of time to strategize on how you can tick specific items off of your to-do list in preparation for being away.
- Set expectations with your team. Before going on vacation, be sure to communicate with your team that you plan to disconnect and will not have regular access to phone and email. While it is understood that emergencies may arise, there shouldn’t be an expectation set forth for you to respond to non-urgent matters on a regular basis.
- Make a list and check it twice. Especially if you get overwhelmed easily, it is best to keep an ongoing list as you think of things you will need to address before leaving for vacation. This can include things you need to take care of before heading out, a transition plan with names and numbers for backup support, and how to proceed with a situation if you are not reachable.
- Give your team support too. Just as you need the time to unwind and disconnect, your fellow colleagues and staff need it too. When your teammates and superiors are out of town, try to do your part in helping them. Think of it as – “do to others as you want done to you.” Help your coworkers by stepping in for them when they are away and doing your part, so they aren’t bombarded with work while they are out, or when they get back.
- Silence your phone. If you are in a position to do so, and have cleared this with your team, it may be a good idea to put your phone and any other device on the “do not disturb” mode. If you speak with your team and find that you do need to check in even while you are away, try to block off certain timeframes on your schedule so you aren’t constantly checking in.
Often times it can be a lot of work to plan a vacation. Some may feel it is almost not worth it, which is why they end up not taking any time away or working their entire vacation. Although it can be tough to plan ahead and take a retreat, it usually pays off ten-fold. We hope the above advice provides encouragement and extra support for you to relax, slow down, and enjoy some much-needed recuperation.
Learn More About Advanced Care Hospitalists (ACH)
ACH is a Lakeland-based hospitalist group providing comprehensive patient care in community hospitals across Central Florida. Our providers are highly skilled, board-certified internal medicine specialists who are available around-the-clock to meet the care needs of patients from hospital admission through discharge. Post-discharge from the hospital, we continue overseeing patient care for 30 days.
We’ve found that continued care coordination ensures more accurate medication reconciliation, improved compliance with discharge plans, better scheduling of follow-up visits, and fewer hospital readmissions. Our providers do everything in their power to make sure our patients receive the compassionate and comprehensive care they need to promote healing and prevent a second hospital admission.
For more information about our services and our practice, please contact Advanced Care Hospitalists at 863-816-5884 or fill out a contact form online.