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Edition 26 – Magnetic

When I was a young boy, our family never went on a holiday together, ever. I don’t know what the reason was. It just never happened. Even at that young age, I was determined to ensure that, when I grew up, I would take my family on holidays at least once per year.

For me, setting aside time in your diary for your family holidays is the most important task you can complete at the start of each year. It means you are dedicating time, our most precious resource, to the most important people in our lives. The same people that, presumably, you are doing all of this for when you wander into your family business each day, whether it is as an owner, a manager or an employee.

This year we’ve headed to Magnetic Island in North Queensland, just off the coast of Townsville. Our time away has allowed me to engage in three of my passions — spending time with my family; travel, this time to a place we’ve never been to before; and motor racing, where my sons and I spent two days at the V8 Supercars event at the Townsville street circuit.

We’ve had some great experiences whilst we’ve been travelling.

We’ve eschewed the hire car and have walked most places on Magnetic Island. At last count, I’d walked 60 km in 10 days, something I wouldn’t normally do in a month.

We’ve delighted in spotting a koala in a gum tree, in the bush, for the first time in our lives.

My wife and I went sailing and met a newly-wed couple who were heading to the USA to start their lives together, as we ourselves approach our 25th anniversary.

More than anything, we’ve spent time with each other. Talking. Laughing. Reading. Swimming in the Coral Sea. Watching bad TV. Dining out. Communicating with our sons about their plans, and ours, for the future.

For me, there’s another major, yet unexpected benefit of taking holidays with your family. You switch off. You clear your mind. You unclutter your brain and allow yourself to think differently.

Instead of solving problems, dealing with emails or being in meetings, you engage the creative side of your mind. You start to think of ideas that are worth pursuing in your business without filtering your thoughts.

Just last week, whilst sitting on our balcony that overlooks the pleasure craft docked in Magnetic Harbour, I came up with a great idea for our clients and key contacts that I believe will be of immense value to each. I’m excited about how that will play out and the benefits that it will bring to everyone who comes into contact with it. All of this from taking the time to be with my family, away from the day to day.

Next week it is back to the office. The batteries will be re-charged, our bodies rested and we will move onto the next phase of our lives. The conversation has already started on where we are heading to next year.

This Week’s Tip

Setting aside the time for a family holiday, and planning it with them, is rewarding on so many levels, for everyone. What are you doing to share that time with your family?