The Power of Taking Time Off

With the Christmas holidays coming up, lots of people are looking forward to having a little bit of time off to recharge their batteries, get their head out of the game for a little while and hopefully come back to whatever it is they are pursuing full of energy and motivation. While this sounds like a great plan in theory and might even be true for the first couple of days back at work or university, the feeling that one has never actually left and had time off is back too soon, too often.

So how is it possible to pro-long that feeling of being completely rested, being excited about the challenges that lay ahead and feeling assured that they can be tackled with a fresh mind and fresh ideas? And what does that feeling actually do when it comes to creativity?

Stefan Sagmeister, an Austrian designer who is now running a highly successful design firm in New York City, has an idea: Take more time off. How much time? How about a year? That’s right, Mr. Sagmeister actually closes his design shop for an entire year every seven years. Why? To reconnect with his design passion, think about future ideas and – most importantly – spend time enjoying life. The ideas he comes up with during this year-long sabbatical all go into the next 7 years of his business, according to him. In other words: One year of spending time with himself and his vision creates energy and also drive him to create even better design work during the following years. Today, other companies are doing it too: 3M gives its employees 15% of their work hours to develop their own ideas (resulting in products like post-its or scotch tape) and Google even allows its employees to work on their own concepts 20%.

According to Stefan Sagmeister, taking time off to find your passion for doing something can also be highly beneficial to your every day life. It’s simple: By doing things you actually enjoy, you feel satisfied. And this satisfaction makes you happy – thus bringing happiness and a positive mind and attitude into other aspects of your life. Watch Stefan Sagmeister’s talk below and find out for yourself what taking time off can do.


Header Image(s) from Pixabay & Gratisography

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