As an accountant there always seem to be some fires to put out – and most are not of your own making. Something is always priority, and that priority tends to compete with all the other priorities! There doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day. But it’s important to put yourself first and take some time out. This break will give you some focus and clarity on what you should do next.
Hi. I’m Anna Goodwin, your friendly finance mentor. With over 30 years of experience, I know how important it is to take time out and give yourself a break.
Recently I have carried out some work in an accountancy office. It surprised me how people work now compared to when I was employed as an accountant. Hardly any of the staff took their lunch breaks and didn’t even leave their desks to get a cuppa. Not like me, who has regular tea breaks! Always good for my wellbeing as it’s an opportunity to stretch my legs!
I know that the thought of having some time out when you feel under pressure with a massive workload seems like the last thing you should be doing. But it is so important, not only for you personally, but for your work. When you return from some time out, you will be more focused, energised and the time away will have helped you sort through any difficult issues.
If you’re stuck working over a computer day in day out, you aren’t giving yourself time to think. Having a break is crucial for your wellbeing, and also, ultimately, it will make you more productive and motivated. That time out is an investment in you – and what is more important than that?
Time out ideas
- A weekend away
- An afternoon at a spa
- A shopping afternoon in a town you don’t normally visit
- Go to the gym
- Play golf
The key is to have a few days away from your work, enough time to relax in a different place. Even a few days will make a difference. A change of scenery and pace is really helpful! Also, if you can try and do this before the Christmas planning starts – even better!
Allowing yourself some time for a break will do you the world of good – it’s time to invest in you.
Think about your career
- What’s important and urgent
- What’s important but not urgent
- What’s not important and urgent
- What’s not important and not urgent
Not only will taking time out help you refresh yourself and make you more productive at work, it is also an opportunity to consider wider issues such as your career. This is much easier to do when you are away from the daily grind.
Take the chance to consider your current position and ask yourself some questions:
- Am I doing something I enjoy?
- Do I want to carry on doing this work?
- Do I want to change direction?
- What would I prefer to do?
- Am I happy working full time?
- Am I happy working in the office or would it be better to have some days working from home?
- What is my retirement plan?
Be honest with yourself and jot down some notes if you feel the need.
Have a look at this link and use these tools to help you decide what you want to do next. Perhaps you decide to link with a mentor who can help you through the sometimes confusing time of deciding what to do next in your career. A mentor can help you sort through you competing thoughts and to see the wood for the trees, helping you to create a pathway for the way forward.
I would do this once you’ve taken some time out. In my experience, thinking about your career direction is always easier when you’re refreshed.
Make that decision to put yourself first for once and book some time out. You won’t regret it!
Next time will be about Managing finances over Christmas.