5 Tips To Ditching Your Business Mindset And Enjoy Your Travel Time Off

If you frequently travel for business, it’s all too easy to fall into a business travel mindset and completely lose your sense of travel wonder.

After a year straight of work and travel throughout Asia, I was burned out. I no longer had any desire to see the sites, try new foods, or learn the local languages. After over 12 months on the road, I realized that if I didn’t take a break, I could lose my love of travel altogether.

But what are you supposed to do about business travel burnout when your family is itching for a vacation?

For non-business travelers, eagerly-awaited vacations promise the realization of lifelong travel dreams and a chance to see the world.

If you’re burnt out on business travel but your family is packing their suitcases, don’t worry – it is possible to join them, and even enjoy yourself, by following these 5 simple steps:

1. Schedule Enough Time

My friend Sarah traveled frequently for business, plane hopping from London to San Francisco on an almost weekly basis.

When she took four months off to explore Southeast Asia, she was amazed at how long it took her to transition out of work mode.

“I was out of the country for over two months before I finally stopped thinking about work every day.”

Now, you may not have the luxury of a 120-day vacation with the fam, but you can schedule time off beyond a long weekend.

Remember that it takes time to decompress, so don’t expect the worries of work to melt away the second you deplane.

2. Completely Unplug

Leave your phone at home. Do not buy a local SIM. Scrap the laptop and march yourself right past the hotel lobby computer bank.

If you prep your clients and co-workers ahead of time and write the requisite Out of Office autoresponder, there is absolutely no reason to stay plugged in during your family vacation.

A device-free few weeks will do wonders for your spirit, enrich the time you spend with your family, and allow you to focus on the unique sights, sounds, and smells of your chosen destination.

3. Slow Your Pace

If a typical work day consists of back-to-back meetings and frequent plane rides, you may be tempted to experience your vacation on the same type of schedule.

Instead, schedule lots of relaxation and do-nothing time with your family. If there is an event you’d like to attend or a tourist destination that can’t be missed, plan an entire day dedicated to that one thing, with ample relaxation time before and after.

4. Seek the Opposite

Do you spend 12+ hours a day in a cramped, windowless office? Book a vacation that allows ample time out in the sun.

Is work a neverending dash from one job site to the next? Book a vacation that lets you sit for hours at a time and just be.

Sometimes it takes more than family time to unravel the stresses of work; you also need to seek an environment opposite of your work environment in order to bring balance back into your life.

5. Enjoy Alone Time

Your family vacation is all about spending quality time with the ones you love. But it’s also about spending some quality time with yourself.

In order to prevent business travel burnout, it’s crucial to spend some time on your own enjoying the aspects of travel you love the most.

Go for a run through the streets of town before your family wakes up in the morning.

Take a few hours to visit the museum that no one else is interested in.

Duck into a temple or church to spend a few minutes alone reconnecting with your deeper self.

When you travel for business, the business of travel can start to feel like a chore. Scheduling a long, languid family vacation is the perfect way to reconnect with your loved ones, yourself, and your love of travel.

Rebekah Voss is an author, travel writer, and the creator of TheHappyPassport.com.

Rebecca Anne Nguyen is a freelance writer and the Founder of TheHappyPassport.com, an inspiration site for solo female travellers.