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Long Work Vacations

Published August 31, 2009

Mabe, the "creative director" on our team, has just left for a two week vacation. Two weeks! Honestly, I can't get over it - two full weeks away from the office, not checking in, zero communication, etc.

People who know me, know I have a hard time being away from the office during work hours for even an hour. In fact, when I do go on vacation, I make sure to allocate two one hour sessions, during the work day, to come back to the hotel, in order to catch up with work. That does not include making sure wherever I go, I have Internet connectivity on my iPhone. I also use the two one hour sessions to charge my phone, so it doesn't run out of battery when I am out and about.

So when I hear people, including Mabe, take a two week vacation without any communication with work - it blows my mind.

Some of you know this, but I am an orthodox Jew, which means I cannot work, call in, check email, etc on Saturdays or Jewish holidays. On some Jewish holidays, they fall out where you have a Thursday and Friday holiday and then Saturday is the Sabbath. That means, I am totally offline, without any communication to the office, for three full days. It stresses me out so much, that I often get sick on Jewish holidays. Although recently, I have been getting better at managing that issue.

All in all, I know 'getting away' is healthy and often necessary but I just cannot grasp doing it myself. At least not without getting sick or working while 'away.'

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Barry Schwartz is the CEO of RustyBrick, a New York Web service firm specializing in customized online technology that helps companies decrease costs and increase sales. Barry is also the founder of the Search Engine Roundtable and the News Editor of Search Engine Land. He is well known & respected for his expertise in the search marketing industry. Barry graduated from the City University of New York and lives with his family in the NYC region.

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