Running on empty

We all know what happens to a machine when you forget to refill the fuel tank or to a smartphone if you forget to recharge the battery: it stops working.

Yet how many of us insist on pushing on when the tank is empty or the batteries are flat? You know what I mean. You get up each day and just keep going despite the fact that you come home exhausted at the end of the day. And how well do you relate to those you claim you love when you are in that state?

Not taking a break has become such a chronic problem in some workplaces that the boss insists that you take your annual leave,  if you happen to live and work in a country that provides such benefits.

But what about those of you who are the boss? Especially those that work for themselves. You’re the one setting the hours and you’re the one most likely to be running on empty – simply because you believe that you are indispensable and that it will all fall over if you are not there.

I’m here to tell you that it will all fall over if you don’t take the opportunity and the time to recharge your batteries, refresh your mindset or relax your muscles – including the worry muscle. If you don’t pause, whether you do that through daily practice, weekends off or a vacation away from the workplace unplugged and offline, you will stop involuntarily.

We can all rationalise why we have to keep going. We have bills to pay, things have to be done, others are depending on us etc etc etc

You can keep going if you want. That’s your call. But be aware that every choice has consequences. If you are a grump to live with when you have been pushed to or beyond your limit – ask yourself whether you want your family or loved ones to spend quality time with you now or if you’d prefer them to visit you in the hospital or turn up for the party after your funeral?

The next time you hear yourself telling yourself that you are indispensable, go and look at your image in the mirror and ask yourself whether you want that person in the cockpit of the plane taking you to your next meeting or controlling the drill excavating your dental cavity? No-one is indispensable. Even the President of the USA is replaced every four years.

You are not Atlas. You are not holding up the sky. All those people that you think depend on you being there – they will find someone else to lean on while you take a break to recharge and refresh.

I have spent this week at the Blue Spirit Retreat in Costa Rica recharging and refreshing my mindset.

You don’t need to travel halfway around the world to do the same.

Thanks for dropping by, Peter.

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