The need for downtime….

July 19 2017

I am just back from a lovely family weekend in Sète in the South West of France.  Sète is a delightful town built around canals that link the sea and the saltwater lake where there is traditional farming of oysters and mussels.  There are huge tuna fishing boats and smaller trawlers moored along the canal along with a good selection of pleasure boats.  The town sport is jousting from rowing boats!

For the first time in as long as I can remember I didn’t take my laptop with me!  I decided to have 3 days of no work.

Our family is a large and complicated one and there were a good selection of us there together with many friends getting together to eat drink and be merry to celebrate Roger Bolt’s birthday.  We all had dinner on Friday night (thank you Roger).  On Saturday night his band The Bad Girls Groove were playing in the main street by the canal.  Suffice to say we were dancing!!

During the day we went to the beach and swam in the sea – freezing!  We ate oysters and the local pasta dish Setois Macoranade and drank Rosé – lots of it!

I found some peace and quiet too – the ‘me’ time I need so much – a lovely early morning walk at dawn to the lighthouse then sitting with coffee and croissant at the quayside with my journal watching the town wake up.

On the way home we had a couple of hours to spare so we took the ‘Petit Train’ around Montpellier and then sat in the park and ate burgers (enough French food by now) with a last bottle of Rosé.

I got home very late Sunday evening and as I was sitting on the train from Gatwick I was reflecting on what fun we had had.  I woke up on Monday morning feeling fantastic – refreshed and ready to go.

As you know by now I believe we are all happier and more fulfilled when we are doing our best work.

I believe that we do our best work when we look after ourselves and keep our minds and bodies in good shape.

An essential part of looking after yourself is just sometimes to down tools and have fun.  I don’t do it nearly often enough – lesson learned!