While I’m not an advocate of doing business 24/7 or bringing your Blackberry to the lunch table, I do believe that you can operate from anywhere these days. The reason I mention this is that good friends of mine have been planning a trip to Florida this week. One of them just lost his job and thought that he may need to stay home in CT to make phone calls, follow up on leads and suffer.

A wise colleague of mine has a penchant for saying, “I carry my office with me in my pocket,” meaning that wherever he is, he’s open for business. It could be the car, an evening at home or actually at his desk with file folders in hand. He is 100% reachable, if he wants to be.

Another associate suggested that it would be a great opportunity for our mutual friend to learn how to do business on the beach as she has done in the past. I say, “Ditto!” A well-planned and pre-paid (!) vacation is essential to our well-being. It would be deprivation to deny yourself this opportunity.

I do want to advocate for the flip side of the availability issue, too. And that is to choose occasions where you are consciously unavailable, like dinnertime. I just got back from a weekend Relationships Coaching program where I intentionally turned off my phone throughout the day. I’ve taken week-long vacations where my outgoing messages–both email and phone–said I would respond when I got back.

The important piece here is that you get to decide. What are your priorities? What’s most important? Is there room for both? You run the office. Don’t let the office run you.

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