On vacation: And acting like it!

Thanks to the wonders of the Internet, We can work almost anywhere, anytime. That’s… probably unhealthy. I mean, it’s great when you’re supposed to be working. As long as you have a solid Internet connection(*) and a quiet room (and electricity), you can be productive anywhere.

Which leads to temptation to … work from anywhere. Even when you’re on vacation. (This phrase may be less applicable outside the United States. Insert joke here about European vs. American vacation response messages.) This has certainly been true for me, when I’m on vacation I have generally felt compelled to check in on email, which leads to responding to email, which leads to… not so much really feeling like I’m on vacation.

This week I’m going to be in Churchill, Canada to observe polar bears, Northern Lights, and generally take a breather. While I occasionally grab a day or two of PTO here and there, I’ve not done much proper vacationing. For many years I was freelancing and… I was never very good at feeling that I could step away for a week or three to vacation when I was being paid by the piece or stipend. So, I’m going to do my best to make it stick and actually not do any work while away.

() Don’t make your co-workers put up with lousy connectivity. Sometimes it’s unavoidable (e.g., during conference travel) but if you can’t count on reliable connectivity and quiet surroundings… maybe re-think whether working from a cafe is *really workable.