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7 Tips for Stress-Free Vacations

I love family vacations. They are a must for work life balance. But I dislike the preparation and the return. I'm usually so crazed trying to get ready for take off that by the time my family gets on the plane, I'm exhausted. Then on the return, I pout wishing my vacation could last forever.

With the right preparation though, you can maximize the benefits of your time off before, during and after your vacation. Recently, More Magazine included some of my suggestions for a stress-free vacation in an article. 

I thought I would share some tips from the article along with a few more I came up with to help you make the most of your vacation.

1. Take your vacation. Your work life and home life will improve it you get away for a little bit.

2. Limit work time. If you feel use must check in, limit it to once a day. That may require adjustments on your smartphone to prevent email alerts all day long.

3. Sign up for international service. If you're going abroad, look into global data plans ahead of time along with prepaid international phone cards.

4. Prepare for emergencies. Instead of telling people to call you on your cell, give out your hotel information to one person in your office or your most important customers. Have them call you only in case of emergencies.

5. Give yourself time to ease back in. You might want to return a day or two before you have to go to work to take care of personal stuff before the chaos of work resumes.

6. Avoid overload. Try not to schedule meetings for your first three days back.

7. Check your attitude. Have something to look forward to when you return -- it may be a new project or a co-worker who makes you laugh.

Readers, if you have any tips, please share. We all want our get-aways to be a stress-free as possible.