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Why CEOs Need to Prioritize Vacation Time

by | Last updated: Apr 14, 2022 | Podcast

Have you ever had your best ideas in the shower or on your morning walk?

It turns out – we all need white space to stimulate creative thinking and help our brain get into that zone where we can come up with new ideas.

In this episode, I’m making a case for taking your vacation – for building more downtime and more white space into your calendar – so you can think BIGGER and truly start thinking like the CEO I know you want to become:

4:55 Why I prioritize taking 10-12 weeks off every year – and how my business continues to run while I’m taking some time off.

6:30 By the end of June, I had already taken 62 days off so far year to date (including weekend days off) including taking 18 days off the month of April! But most of the days weren’t relaxing on the beach. They were just days off for intentional rest.

8:43 If you study prolific composers or writers or artists and their creative process, you’ll find that they build in hours and hours of time to simply think or allow their mind to wander.

10:07 Bill Gates has been known for his 2 weeks of ‘Thinking Time’ where he literally escapes to a cabin in the woods to rest and think.

10:45 My model calendar is the key to creating blocks of time in my week for the most essential CEO tasks in my business including my weekly CEO Date, working with my clients, creating content, or connecting with other entrepreneurs or attending events.

14:00 As my business started to grow, I had to get clearer on my capacity for each type of task and build in white space so that I don’t over-extend myself and can truly show up 100% for my clients (ie – I max out at 3 client calls per day and I need 30 minutes break between each call).

16:12 Why I need to limit what I do in the white space between my CEO tasks — it’s not about doing as much as possible! It’s about making sure you’re optimized for performance so you can show up 100% for each task.

17:05 How taking Fridays off one summer led me to create my Flex Fridays, where I have the option to work or not work depending on what I really need whether it’s a lunch date with an entrepreneur friend, a massage, or just a day to putter around the house.

20:10 After adding in weekend retreats for The CEO Accelerator, I realized that I was burning myself out when I jumped right into work the following Monday. So I started adding in buffer days before and after travel or after doing a client intensive or retreat so I could allow myself a chance to catch my breath and take care of myself.

23:40 Taking some extra days off isn’t about going on a fancy vacation or spending a lot of money! It’s about intentionally taking time off to relax and restore so you can show up 100% for your business.

24:30 How I took 18 days off in April (including 5 beautiful days off in Tulum with my mastermind) to take care of myself including getting myself to the doctor, the dentist, and dramatically uplevel my self-care so I could address some niggling health issues. Thanks to my Model Calendar – I didn’t have to reschedule client calls or dramatically shift anything! I was able to do only the most essential tasks so I could truly rest.

27:15 Recap! Here’s a few things to do to build in more white space in your calendar:

  1. Create Your Model Calendar.
  2. Build in Flex Fridays.
  3. Add Buffer Days.
  4. Plan a Mini-Sabbatical for a week or two (similar to what I did in April)

30:25 Your challenge from me today! Can you prioritize taking an extra day off and giving yourself a 3 day weekend in the next month?

If you loved today’s episode – please take a screenshot of today’s episode and share on Instagram – tag me @racheal.cook – and let me know your biggest insight or aha!

Show Links

What Is Your Role as CEO?

How a Model Calendar Helps Me Work Just 25 Hours a Week

The Broad Coworking Space for Women

The CEO Retreat

Listener Shout-Out

Thank you so much to Dr. Michelle Mazur for her review over on Apple Podcasts.

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