What does a Bank Holiday mean to you? An extra day off work? Chores, chores and more chores that you have been putting off for months but now there is no escaping it? Or time for you to reboot and rebuild? Whatever a Bank Holiday means to you there aren’t many of them so why would so many of us choose to waste them?
Around the world every country has various numbers of Bank Holidays. The UK has 8 paid as standard, UAE has 10m, South Africa has 12, Australia 10-13, France has 11 – lots of extra days off. Why are they called Bank Holidays you might ask? Simple terminology from UK history, in 1871 the first Bank Holidays were created, Easter Monday, Whitsun, August and Boxing Day – others were called public holidays such as Christmas Day although the phrases are pretty interchangeable now. Originally the banks were closed to the public on these days and the staff still came in and worked on getting everything up to date and organised.
The original principle was to take time out to get organised and ship shape, catch up on ‘STUFF’ that is going on and get everything in order. Life moves at such a pace now that pressing that pause button can seem almost impossible to do because there is so much going on and more that needs doing that just gets forgotten and avoided.
Consider the last few public holidays, what have you done and what have you achieved? Doing nothing in order to recover, reboot and get stronger is very different from doing nothing and just losing a day. Where are you investing that time? I’m not the most gifted at DIY, I (along with my wife) tend to pick fault with the work afterwards and get frustrated with my inability to do a perfect job so I avoid it or I avoid that look from my other half, you know the one that says it doesn’t look very good, does it?
Having a busy lifestyle, business interests and on top of that teenage children that take up almost every other spare moment of my time, for me a Bank Holiday is one to be selfish, reflect and play. That can vary from a round of golf to climbing a mountain or swimming in a lake with all or some of my family in tow. Of course, that’s just me! A trip to a country house, the theatre, visiting friends or building something works just as well. For me not being of the digital generation I cannot think of anything worse than just spending endless hours playing a video game, others would disagree with that though – their choice.
My question to you now is as a result of reading this newsletter will you consider and investigate some or all of the following?
1/ Consider how you will use your Bank Holidays this year
2 / These are bonus days, where the standard normal day to day activity doesn’t happen, so make them count
3/ Plan them in advance
4/ Make them special / different / memorable
5/ Consider the gift that 8 days is, they might not be fee earning days but they can be so much more valuable to you if you respect them and use them accordingly
6/ Consider creating a Bank Holiday Bucket List – not everyone wants to or aspire to be a weekend warrior doing random extreme activities, what is your equivalent? Book them in and make them happen.
Good luck – make every Bank Holiday count! They are a gift not to be wasted or lost!