Management and Leadership in Nonprofits


Vacation Brain

Oct 23, 2017
By: Tammy T. Jelinek

I did it. I took a vacation and mostly disconnected. I handled two ASAP requests. I kept my email under 100 by checking/responding/cleaning it out every few days. But mostly I ate, slept, read, indulged in an adult beverage (or a few), and had a great vacation in the sun for my annual girls’ trip.

It was harder than I thought—and easier too. 

  • Easier because I have a great team; I know they can handle the details when I am gone. And I prep (like a mad woman) the week prior. And I know that one week without me will not change the world.
  • Harder because answering work email is as much of a “have to” now for me as morning coffee, and my 3 p.m. snack. Because I still made lists of what I needed to do when I got back. And because when I was lying on the beach, I was planning what needed adjusting to meet goals, I was developing my next training slide deck, and I was thinking about my next hire to replace a person who has been with the firm for 37 years and is retiring. 

I worked less this vacation than ever before, and I probably have more responsibilities than I ever have.

Here’s why I think it was more important now than ever before to acknowledge and appreciate my vacation brain—because my body, heart, mind, and soul needed a break:

  • I came back ready to tackle some big things.
  • I missed my team and came back ready to reengage and lead again.
  • I let my needs come first—for a little while.

Tell me about your vacation brain. How do you take care of yourself on vacation? It’s always great when leaders can learn from others!

Wishing you a great day, and remember: Lead with legacy

Tammy Jelinek has over 20 years of experience working in and with fabulous organizations. This blog will explore what it’s like for her to lead as a woman, as a GenXer, and as a person who truly wants to lead with legacy—meaning she wants to walk her talk. Tammy has trained nationally across the United States, built businesses, coached amazing people, and built a career in the squiggliest path known to man…or, in this case, woman. She has a passion for being curious, helping people, and making actions happen. 

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Tammy T. Jelinek, MBA
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Vacation Brain - DITTO

By Monique Easterling 10/26/2017 4:21:05 PM

Hi Tammy, I really enjoyed reading your story. It sounds so much like something I do. I tried to take some time off recently (stay-cation) and got sick while out. Found myself checking & responding emails and making the attempt to go in. Supervisor recommend I do not go to work. I love your motto to Lead with legacy. I am looking forward to a VACATION away from home & a kid to refresh my mind, body, soul and my HEART- love that one too. Never thought about relaxing my heart. My child really keeps that going. Will keep you posted. Thanks so much for sharing.

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