How a long sabbatical can give your career a fresh start
The two-day-leisure-per-week rationing does not have it all to restore life and strength in the weary soul worked up all through the week. Sometimes, the unmerciful arm of the economy steals even the little rest assigned at the end of the week. A non-stop exposure to this rigmarole can have adverse effects on the mind and life. We may debate about choosing life over career or the reverse of it all our life. However, debates can hardly be a solution to the accumulated stress caused by the acute and mindless competitiveness of the world.
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Our daily rush gives us little time to smell the roses or the rotting, unattended, and overflowing dumpyard that stands as monument of man's inability to clean up his own mess. A man who, for years, has zipped past the scenes happening on the side of his daily commute to work and back would hardly have registered any information that reality presented to him. However, if he decides to slow down, take a walk perhaps, instead of carting away cocooned in his car, he would observe the finer details.
Life, too, is a journey that needs be savoured at a slow pace. But the world of commerce would allow no such thing. In this scenario, it is up to us to take the necessary break to assess the quality of the experiences of life, and re-evaluate or do a course correction to improve the quality of our lives.
A long sabbatical could be a good idea to find and reclaim the balance that the ever-rushing world takes away from us. Here are three things to bear in mind if you wish to take a break from the work-work-work routine.
Consolidate for clarity
Planning is as critical for a sabbatical as it is critical for any project. Your break time is your time. How you spend it is totally up to you. If it is spent unwisely, there's none but you to be blamed. The first thing one has to do when planning on going on a sabbatical is to take stock of their mental, physical, emotional, and financial self. Focus has to be on setting things in order.
Change gears – slow down first
It's absolutely critical to gradually slow down before you stop. Sound off the idea to a mentor, or a good friend. Announce the plan to workmates and your boss, and get necessary approvals and permission. Reduce the workload and consciously reduce the pace of your life.
Money is not the deciding factor
The biggest deciding factor of the quality of our experiences is money. But if we're clear about the kind of experiences we are looking for, instead of jumping into the bandwagon and going along with the prevailing trend, we would be able to use money wisely to further our goal instead of being controlled by the limitations of money. If we consciously bring down our dependency on money, we could achieve our dream of taking the long break just when we need it instead of waiting endlessly to save enough for the picnic. Self-reliance brings down the need for money to a large extent. Instead of living in a city, you could perhaps move to a village where there would be many surprises both rude and pleasant, but the cost of living would be very low.
A good refreshing break from your job, your career, and your ambition can recharge you to come back (or move on) with richer experiences and learnings needed to live life to the fullest.