"Different people find different vacation scenarios relaxing," chuckles Sussman. And in these rapidly changing times, "The point is to work on knowing yourself rather than following society's old rules about what constitutes getting away from it all."
8 DO'S AND DON'TS FOR TODAY'S VACATION-TAKER
DON'T try to go cold turkey technologically. Just don't dialup or log on unnecessarily or compulsively. ("Don't let the technology control you; let technology enable you to control your life," as Dr. Manevitz puts it.)
DON'T expect instant relaxation and get further stressed when it's not forthcoming. For most people in high-energy jobs, the mental and physical transition between work pace and vacation pace takes a few days.
DON'T try to do too much on vacations, or have typical overachiever expectations; this can make a vacation as stressful as work.
DON'T try to do too little on vacations because that's how vacations ought to be. A traditional do-nothing, get-away-from-it-all, desert island-style vacation won't automatically relax you.
DO bring along your laptop and other tech toys, but limit your work time, work scope, and availability. Think ahead about the circumstances under which you should be disturbed, and make sure your whole staff knows when to call and when to stall.
DO allow yourself sufficient transition time to get out of, and then back into, the grind.
DO think ahead about what you want, and plan a realistic vacation with realistic goals and expectations. Once you've prioritized your main goals (with everyone's participation, if it's a connect-with-family vacation), try to eliminate the problems that could get in the way and ensure that everyone gets to do at least one thing they want most.
DO put considerable time and thought into understanding your own needs and how your needs might differ from society's traditional idea of what a vacation is.
Consider, for example, a high-energy vacation that is as active as work, but involves activities completely different from those at work. (And use this concept of changing your routine even during a lying-around-like-a-lox vacation. If you normally read The Wall Street Journal, for instance, read novels.)