Pete Cheslock

DevOps, RelEng, DevTools, Automation, Randomness

And Here We Go

There is an immense value to taking time off. It’s not something that can be measured. But there is something genuinely amazing that happens when you stop working. The most vacation I’ve ever taken while employed was 3 weeks. And I was only able to get that because I negotiated it in as part of my employment package due to an upcoming wedding and honeymoon. But even then, taking time off was much, much different than my most recent experience with Funemployment.

One thing I have found is that when you take a vacation from work, you likely are still working. You are still thinking about work. Thinking about email. Thinking about meetings. It’s hard to really let everything go. I’ve found that it takes at least one full week away from work before I can even start relaxing. Before I can really let go from the day to day that I’m constantly drawn back into.

But….when you quit your job. Everything changes. You don’t need to worry about all the email you’ll have when you get back. You don’t need to thinking about what meetings you might be missing, what decisions are being made without you there. It all doesn’t matter anymore. There is no amount of vacation that can replicate that feeling.

The best advice I can give to anyone who is changing jobs is to take at LEAST 2 weeks off between opportunities. Those two weeks, when you have nothing to do. You’ll find, they become the best few weeks of your life.

Be smart with your money. Stockpile up cash, and try to live a generally debt-free life. You’ll find that you can take even more time off. More time to find the right opportunity. More time to have conversations with companies that you would never have if you were still working.

The most amazing part of taking time off is when you find that next opportunity, and you are EXCITED to start. It’s no longer just a “job”. It’s a clean slate to go and build some amazing stuff again.

I couldn’t be more exited to be joining an already amazing team over at Threat Stack. I know that I’ve taken just the right amount of time off because I can’t wait to get working again. I can’t wait to dive into hard problems again and find a way to solve them.

If you are someone who is in a similar position. Someone who is going to be changing jobs soon. There is no prize to jump from one job to another. Take the time and enjoy the break.