In the digital world we live in, we are expected to return emails, texts and social messages at the speed of light. That’s why now more than ever, it’s critical for everyone, not just CEOs to really unplug when they’re OOO. But if you talk to any CEO (myself included) this is much easier said than done.
Here are the top 4 reasons really being OOO might be the most important thing you do all year.
1. Make Space for New Inspiration
We are a go go go society. This goes double for your typical CEO. But have you ever noticed that it’s in the “being” not the “doing” where new ideas are sparked? Sometimes this is in the shower and sometimes it’s in on the beach in Cabo. I’ve had many business coaches push me to focus more on being through meditation in an attempt to live a more balanced life. What’s so interesting about this, is that the universe doesn’t like a vacuum, so when you are present, stop the daily hustle for a minute and breathe, the universe provides new energies, ideas and people that can inspire everything from what to do with that problem client, to new content ideas, to big picture, life changing decisions. As a CEO the most challenging thing I’ve found is just being still, but it has been in that stillness that I’ve evolved the most as a leader for my company.
2. Time for a Trust Fall
Most CEOs are guilty of saying they are OOO and then responding to emails when they are half way across the world. While unplugging can be a great source of inspiration, it’s also an opportunity for you to show your team that you trust them. Employees are more interested in the right corporate culture fit now than ever before, and no one wants to work their ass off for a company that doesn’t trust that they can block and tackle for you when you’re out. By jumping in on these emails when you’re supposed to be OOO, you’re saying, “I don’t think you can handle this.” That kind of sentiment breeds resentment and is passive aggressive behavior at it’s worst. If you’ve built the right structure within your company, trust that your team has your back. It empowers them and gives them ownership over the business and breeds a healthy culture of trust and inclusion.
3. Play Hard to Get
Have you ever noticed that when you’re OOO all of a sudden prospects that you haven’t heard from get back to you, that deal closes or that big check comes in? Without fail this happens to me every time I’m OOO. Not to be too woo woo guru, but I feel like it’s the universe validating that taking time for myself is a good thing. When you’re working on yourself as a priority, it means you’re vibrating at a higher frequency, one that others want to be a part of. There’s no better way to close a deal, than going out of town. It’s like the client knows they can’t have you and it makes them want you that much more. Just like in dating, playing a little hard to get by making yourself a priority really works.
4. Manage Stress Levels
Americans live to work, we don’t work to live. And that’s why we are one of the unhealthiest; stressed out, pill popping countries in the world. Whether you’re taking a staycation and vegging out at home, or whether you’re on a different continent, truly being OOO is one of the best ways to increase serotonin and lower the production of stress hormones. Think of it as a necessary recalibration. We can’t continue running at a lightening pace forever until our body literally tells us it can’t take it anymore. Don’t let it get to that level, it’s not a badge of honor to end up in the hospital. Most of us are not curing cancer, so it’s pretty egotistical for us to think that the world would fall apart if we took a week off. Whenever I take a vacation, I come back more inspired, energetic and impassioned about our clients and our work, because I’ve made myself, my health, and my family a priority.