There are certain seasons in out lives that are extremely busy, seasons where it is difficult to find time to step away, but even in those times it is important to break from routine. As leaders, we set the pace and it is very easy for us to set the pace at a level that is unsustainable. Yet, there’s a tension that the tasks of the day still need to be done.
The answer is simple. Trust your team.
Equip them and set them free.
During the summer I over see a day camp that runs 12 hours a day Monday through Friday. I also have responsibilities at church on Sundays. A schedule like this, if not controlled, can very easily lead to burn out. My leaders are just as bought in to the mission of the camp as I and would gladly follow my example of a pace that leads them to burn out as well.
So, while I can’t take a weekday off each week, I do make sure I take off when I can. I also set the example of what’s important. My staff knows that my family expects that I’ll leave at 5:30, so barring an extreme emergency, I leave at 5:30 – even if that means leaving things undone.
Stepping away for a break can strengthen your team as well. It gives them the opportunity to gain the experience of making decisions on their own building their confidence and helping you learn to trust them even more.
It shouldn’t need to be said, but I think we forget that breaks also help us step out of the monotony and gain a clear perspective. In other words, taking a break makes us, and our team, more productive.