Social media and the vacation #FAIL

I’ve been a social media netizen for three years.

I’ve figured out Twitter.

I’m figuring out blogging.

I know enough about integrating all this stuff to be a little dangerous.

But the one thing I haven’t figured out is vacations.

I love to travel and each year I plan one big blow-out vacation. This week, my wife and I will heading to Scandinavia and Russia for two weeks. On top of this grand adventure, I get to meet two of my best Twitter buddies, Jon Buscall and Kimmo Linkama (stay tuned!).

And while I’m filled with anticipation for this much-needed break, I’m also filled with anxiety because ever since the dawn of the social web and starting my own business I have not done vacations well. I’m probably not the only member of this club?

One thing I have learned about myself — I’m a hard worker but can only keep up the pace with regular vacations.  When I don’t get a break, I’m less effective and begin to get irritable.

And while I have done a pretty good job TAKING vacations, I have not done a great job ENJOYING vacations.

Leading up to last year’s trip I had to complete some intense customer projects, which seemed to multiply as departure day approached. I had to get my blogging house in order … and of course I had to start planning for the trip. So by the time I left, I was exhausted.

During the trip I allowed myself to get sucked back into the digital tsunami.  I could not ignore customer emails that started with “I know you’re in Europe but … ” And by the end of the trip I was already worrying about the wall of work and emails I would have to deal with when I got back.

So this year, I’m learning from my mistakes.  I did a better job setting expectations with customers.  I’m simply going to be unavailable for two weeks.

I’m turning my email stream over to my virtual assistant so it will be more managable when I get home.

On most of my trip, I won’t even have a wireless signal.

I’ll probably try to do a little tweeting when I’m gone because I enjoy that, but I’m changing my bio to read “I’m not ignoring you, I’m on vacation.”

And I’m turning the blog over to you!  Tomorrow starts the Second Annual Community Week on {grow}.  I’ve asked some long-time, loyal readers to take over the blogging responsibilties for a few days. After all, if we’re a community, I don’t need to do the heavy lifting ALL the time right?  : )

We have a great line-up of exciting topics lined up that will present some interesting and diverse views. Please support these folks with your tweets and comments — maybe next year you’ll be a Community Week blogger!

Any way, I’m off to relax and I’m sure will be filled with lots of great ideas and stories to share with you when I return!  Au revoir!

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