4 steps to avoid a meltdown. Spend your money on travel before you have to spend it on a shrink.

4 steps to avoid a meltdown.  Spend your money on travel before you have to spend it on a shrink.

Sometimes you just wanna getaway.  You catch yourself daydreaming at work about a Hawaiian vacation.  You’re sitting in a cubical but for a moment you confuse your desk fan for an ocean breeze.  And then you’re snapped back into reality. This is what it is to want to get away.  But there are times when WANT slides into NEED.

You need to getaway.

  • You’re comfortable routine at home has turned into a torturous rut.
  • You can’t even enjoy the good things about where you live.
  • You don’t enjoy your family time and are short with the ones you love.
  • You’re burnt out at work.
  • You feel like you’re taking crazy pills.

Crazy Pills

You need to getaway.

Leave now.  Drop everything.  Go.

And when you’ve decompressed a bit ask yourself this question: why do you work so hard?

Seriously.  Why do you work so hard?

  • Is it because your boss puts pressure on you?
  • Are you putting unnecessary pressure on yourself?
  • Do you think the wheels of commerce will grind to a halt if you don’t get through your in-box today?
  • Is it because you need more money?  How much money do you need?  Answer that question and then ask yourself if you would have been happy with 25 percent less ten years ago.
  • Are you obsessing with making everything perfect in your home–always cleaning, always working on a home improvement project, always working on a to-do-list–with the result being you have no down-time at all?
  • Are you trying to create a better life for yourself in retirement? What if you never make it to retirement?

I’ll admit it.  I’ve taken a vacation when I’ve been on the verge of a meltdown.  From a young age I was in a high stress, high responsibility job. I hit bottom when I was in the ER with rapid heart rate and sky high blood pressure…at 25 years old!  I finally became convinced that working myself to the verge of a meltdown wasn’t a healthy lifestyle and that instead I needed to bring life into greater balance.

I’ve decided that my life purpose is not to retire well.  I want to live well.  Now.

You’re not irreplaceable.  Your workplace will function without you for a few days.  (Shhhhh…. it will be just fine for a few weeks really…)

Talking to a Shrink

You can spend your money now on travel OR you can have a meltdown and spend your money later on a shrink.

Here are 4 simple steps you can take to avoid coming to the verge of a meltdown.

  1. Take the maximum number of vacation days allowed by your workplace.  Force yourself to do it.  Don’t tell me you can’t afford it.  You can.  It may take some finagling… it may take a few sacrifices here and there.  But view your time as your most valuable possession and understand that the time you have with your kids is fleeting.  I’m sure you’d love to travel on these vacation days.  But even if you can’t travel, take the time off work!  And don’t just go home and go to work on your to-do list there.  Decompress.  Read a good book.  Go on a hike.  Ride your bike.  Change things up.
  2. Plan times to enjoy the place that you live.  Determine that every Saturday you are going to go to the FILL IN THE BLANK (Lake, Beach, Farmers Market, Downtown Shopping, the City, the valley, the mountains, etc).  It’s so easy to miss what is in our own backyard because we become slaves to the to-do-list (both at work at and home).  Here’s one little thing I’m doing.  Every Tuesday morning I meet with an accountability group at 5:30 in the morning.  We wrap up around 7 or 7:30.  It’s still early and relatively quite at the house.  So I resolved to go paddle boarding on Lake Tahoe every Tuesday morning after my men’s group.  Now every Tuesday morning I go on a little one-hour vacation.  It’s something that helps me balance life.
  3. Don’t not travel because you can’t pull off financially the trip you really want to take.  Look for little weekend getaways just a few hours at home that require no time off of work or just a Friday or a Monday so you have a long weekend. Check out our post on Staycations.  This gets you away from all the nagging things you really want to do around the house.  Think about friends you can stay with or go camping.  We’re so excited to do more family camping (Read our Camping Shopping List HERE).
  4. Say no.  I’m passionate about being involved in my church and community.  But you must have boundaries.  Don’t say yes to everything. Leave a little margin in your life.
What works for you?  How do you avoid a meltdown.  Share your thoughts in the comments section below or on our Facebook Page HERE.  While you’re there, be sure to like our page so you’ll get updates from FamilyTrek.org in your feed.

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