Should You Ditch the Laptop?
I had a debate with a friend of mine, who is also an internet marketer, as to whether one should bring a laptop on a vacation or a trip.

The question is not so much whether you should bring a laptop versus a tablet or another form of device when going on a business trip, but more about whether you should bring a computer at all when you’re trying to take a break away from work.

My friend had voted for the position of bringing a laptop, because he said that it’s almost more stressful to prepare for a trip and get all the emails and everything ready so that you don’t have to take your laptop on a vacation, than it is to simply bring the laptop and handle a few things while you’re taking your vacation.
An example would be that you’re very busy in your business, and you want to take a ten-day trip with your spouse to Hawaii. You book the trip months in advance, and as it approaches you realize that it’s going to become much more difficult to get your business ready for it.

With internet marketing, that means preparing all of the emails that will go out in advance, your content, as well as possibly some of the things when you come back so that there is no drop in income when you’re away.

I’ve had the experience myself, where I would put so much work and effort in the weeks leading up to the trip that it became a stress in itself.

My friend argued that it was better just to do what you can without going crazy, bring the laptop, and handle a few things while you’re away because that’s one of the beauties of internet marketing, that you can do it from anywhere.

Another position on this topic comes from my previous business coach, Andrew Barber Starkey.

He founded The Pro Coach System, and said that one of the best ways for entrepreneurs to become productive is to book a non-refundable one week vacation every quarter.

Why? Because the threat of the approaching vacation becomes an incentive in itself to get things done. Then when you go on your vacation don’t bring your laptop, don’t bring your usual distractions.

I subscribed to this school of thought for many years, and my vacations became a motivating factor. However, because I often took trips lasting longer than one week, it became necessary to bring the laptop on those trips.

Now, after all these years, my personal position is very different.

My personal position on the laptop situation
I have tried not bringing the laptop on vacation and I have tried bringing it as well, and after all these years, I think that it’s better not to bring it and not to worry about the drop in income while you’re away.

That’s a completely different position than I previously had,  because before I was always thinking about maintaining the same level of productivity, even when I was not physically at my desk.

Many times I took time off but had scheduled so many emails and projects in advance that it appeared as if I were just at home. Nobody knew that I was, in fact, traveling to a tropical or exotic destination.

I agree, somewhat, with my friends that the stress of getting everything ready for such a trip sometimes becomes overwhelming, and it kind of defeats the purpose of the vacation itself. However I now opt for not bringing the laptop because it is a huge source of distraction and stress.

Let’s be honest, it’s a source of stress even if you’re just occupied for thirty minutes to an hour a day doing work-related emails. It will occupy your mind for the rest of the day, and you won’t be able to unwind.

It’s better, in my opinion, to get all of the work done before hand and not have to deal with it.

I once took a month-long vacation to Bali after an incredible streak of productivity towards the beginning of 2006, but the first two weeks of this trip were not really a true vacation, as I had brought my computer and kept working while traveling.

At some point I decided to really unwind and spend the last two weeks of the trip without working at all; this became my true vacation.

My belief now is that it’s okay to see a drop in productivity or income when you’re on vacation because otherwise it’s not really a vacation at all.

What will happen if you let yourself truly relax is that you will return rejuvenated. This will, in turn, increase your productivity as well as your income. The purpose of a vacation is to get a break from work and return reinvigorated.

Now, it’s also possible to take an extended trip of several months, such as a relocation trip to escape the winter, and in these cases bringing the laptop would make sense.

However, even when I do take such a trip, I plan for at least the last two weeks of the trip to be a pure vacation.

If you’re interested in working from home, or anywhere, and having the free time to take vacations whenever you want, consider writing your own eBooks and publishing them yourself or selling them online on your own website.

In my course you will get step by step instructions on just how to do this, plus marketing help!

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– Frederic