About a month ago, my cell phone was thrown into a bag at the pool along with the kids' pool toys. Next thing ya know, I am pulling my phone out of several inches of water at the bottom of a bag and feeling a sense of dread come over me... "Oh no... I won't have a phone while I am out of town next week." I am not being sarcastic in the least, "dread" might actually be an understatement. I was disconnected for several days, and I felt completely isolated and out of touch. Not only could I not easily call my wife during the day to tell her how much I adore and miss her, I could not easily tell my children to be good for their momma, but I could not contact clients. I could not check emails. Egads, man, I could not check emails!!!
MSN Careers says that I am a workaholic. I think they might be right.
Sadly, but I think that the Evangelism role actually requires you to be a bit of a workaholic. Most of the Evangelists that I have talked to feel the same as I do, although I differ in not being able to disconnect on nights, weekends, and vacations.
I am going on vacation this week. I am going to the beach. I am not taking my phone. I am not taking my computer. I am taking my Zune, but I am deleting all work-related videos and only carting music along. On my last vacation, my "light-reading" was "Effective Windows Workflow Foundation". This time, I am not going to take a "geek book" (my wife affectionately calls them), I am going to buy a non-technical book for the first time in over a year. My out of office assistant message announces to my fellow workers that I am not reachable, whatever it is will have to wait.
I am going to try, once and for all, to disconnect for just a few days.
I honestly don't know if I can disconnect.
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Even when I'm on the Big Island up in the hills, I think about work too often. For me, there is nothing else on the planet than software, and it's a hard habit to break.
But seriously-I do know the answer. Back in the late 80's, I had a beautiful Sabre 38 sailboat in the Chesapeake Bay. I was a one-man ISV selling System/38 software; this was before Internet connectivity and WWAN cards in laptop computers. My wife-at-the-time hammered me until I agreed to take a week off. It took several (five, actually) days for the mental tornadoes to spin themselves out (it helped that my customers were running smoothly). On the 6th day, I realized, with no small shock, I *was* having a good time. IMHO, the solution to having a great vacation is to *make sure it's long enough.* It takes time to decompress and to get into a different (vacation) groove. You have a good boss and a good team: I suggest you take a couple of extra days!
Have fun! :)