What going to Jamaica taught me

This fall has been such a whirlwind! One of my colleagues resigned in November and I picked up some of her workload. I was scheduled to take the SHRM-CP December 1st and then leave for Jamaica on the 3rd. I was starting to stress! My husband and I had never taken a week off of work together before our honeymoon, and after that, we promised we would take a vacation once a year. I’ll admit, we are both workaholics, but we love what we do. I always get stressed before a trip because I worry about my clients needing something while I’m gone, etc. Even though I was so excited for our trip, I was starting to dread it because I felt my workload continuing to increase and knew it would only keep piling up while I was gone.

I’m proud of myself that during our week at Sandals Ocho Rios, I completely unplugged! My phone stayed on Airplane mode the entire time, so I didn’t take calls or look at emails. I realized how much time I had to think and reflect once I was disconnected, something I really don’t do that often. Here’s what my week in Jamaica taught me.

1) I have so much to be thankful for. As I just mentioned, I really don’t take enough time to reflect and appreciate the little things in my life that happen day to day. I thought about all of my family, friends, 2018 accomplishments and my health. Of course the warm and peaceful setting sure helped me to relax and create the environment where I head the head space to reflect. I felt refreshed and fulfilled getting this time to think. I learned I need to find ways to incorporate this into my schedule more often. It felt freeing to be so still, and not thinking about what’s next and what else there is to do. It’s interesting how that easily becomes the normal state our brains operate in.

2) I have so much to look forward to. After studying for the SHRM-CP for months, my identity became “anticipated test taker.” I prioritized my time strictly for studying which meant declining invitations to events and doing other activities I enjoy. While sitting at the pool, I felt so excited that I had passed the test and was now able to move forward. The vacation came at a perfect time so I could now think of what I wanted to do with the time I had back from studying. I’m glad that after taking the exam, I didn’t just jump back into my day to day business. I had some time in Jamaica to ideate and plan out my goals for 2019! I also love to make lists. So I had time to make a lot of lists (:

3) What I learned this year about being a talent partner in the staffing world. I can’t believe I started with Remedy in the beginning of February. This year went by so fast! I remember taking the leap from corporate to Remedy and I was hesitant. Hesitant only because it was unfamiliar territory. I knew I would have an awesome boss and team, but I wasn’t sure how successful I’d be in the role. I knew I’d be able to use my strengths and passion, so it was worth the move! I thought about what worked and what didn’t. How different helping 30 different clients out at a time was different from being dedicated to one. The main things I learned were that whatever job you have, you have to be doing it for the right reasons. I had a perception about working in staffing that I think a lot of people have – it’s quota driven, cut throat, there’s a culture of fear (you’ll be fired for not bringing in X amount of dollars). Being at Remedy has been the perfect cultural fit for me because the company lets me do what I do best. Use my style, process and relationships. They’ve trusted me and not micro-managed me to a number. By being an HR pro who can see the bigger picture, I help my clients through the hiring process, and help them learn and grow. My clients know I’m a partner, not an order taker. I don’t just get “butts in the seats.” And because of this, I’ve never had to look at my $ goals. I’m ecstatic that I far exceeded them, which means I’ve contributed to my organization’s health and future, as well as changed the lives of more candidates than I thought I could. I spent some time reliving all of the exciting and rewarding moments that happened throughout the year.

For the entire week is was 80 degrees or higher, sunny, and the only decisions we had to make each day were “beach or pool?” and “which restaurant today?” I thought about how thankful I was to have the ability to take vacations and get some quality time away with my husband. My team was amazing while I was gone – they held down the fort and then some. They stretched outside of their comfort zones to help out with my work. Knowing I had a strong support system at home made the trip that much more enjoyable too. I’m glad I unplugged, reflected, and came back recharged. I don’t think we will ever give up this one week long vacation a year tradition! What has going on vacation taught you?

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