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Do you ever take time for yourself, maybe do something you enjoy other than work? Ever go on vacation?
Last month I embarked on the annual family vacation, I’m talking about the stereo-typical mom, dad, 2.3 kids and enough stuff to stay at the lake for 3 weeks longer than we’re booked, all crammed into, and on top of the Ford Explorer designed to carry a third of the stuff I have creatively packed into every nook and cranny, all fitting perfectly together like a giant jig-saw puzzle. Nothing wiggles, nothing moves, I have utilized every single bit of space, I even put my golf club between the kids to keep them separated.
As we are getting ready to back out of the garage, I can’t help but gaze in amazement at the sheer volume of stuff, of course I can’t resist the opportunity to explain to my wife and 12 year old son (I would have tried to explain to my 3 year old daughter as well, but she has already learned to ignore me), that it is 24 years of mobile DJing that allows me to be able to pack anything into anywhere. “No average man could have pulled this off,” I tell them, “with some zip-strips and electrical tape I can do anything!” The multiple sets of rolling eyes tell me it’s going to be a long 6 hour drive to North Star Lake, but we’re on our way, and, I’m on vacation!
Why we go…
A few years ago I had the life changing privilege of seeing Bryan Dodge speak at a Disc Jockey News Conference, one of many things I took from him that day, was the way he talked about his family time. One of the things Bryan talked about was, working hard enough at work so you don’t have to when you get home. In other words, when you are home be home, have enough respect for your family to give them the best of your time, not the worst. We, as entertainers are natural “pleasers.” We go out of out way every weekend, sometimes way over the top to please a client, or guest, but come home to the people who we will spend the rest of our lives with and stop trying to “please.” Have you ever been short or crabby with your spouse or kids, then instantly become sweet as pie to a stranger on the phone? Why do we sell them short? Why not give the people we love and are truly committed to, our best energy and attention?
One of my favorite Bryan Dodge quotes is “Bring Energy Home! You had it for others that don’t really care, so make sure you have it for your family”. So it’s important to make time for your self and your family, and to make time to be a family. As wedding entertainers, we are constantly aware of the importance of our clients wedding day, but in the eyes of our loved ones how does Suzie and Tom’s wedding day compare to the importance of your sons t-ball game or a dance recital, or helping your 3 year old catch her first fish. I sometimes wonder if we don’t take our loved ones for granted or even just neglect ourselves. Any successful person will tell you there needs to be a healthy balance in life from family, work, social, and just plane fun. Every summer I block off one week of my schedule, no work, dances, meetings, no cell phones, and we go on a vacation as a family. It doesn’t have to be extravagant or expensive, it just has to be us.
What about me? Take some time for you, and your family. We all know about the wedding season burnout. You work hard all week to insure you will be busy all weekend; we deal with drunk guests, obnoxious requests, and even the occasional bride-zilla. The chance to get away for a while, hit the “reset button” and grow as a family, parent, lover, and person will pay off in more ways than you can count… and if nothing else you can get really good at packing the car.