Be Intentional about Time Off
/ Author: Heidi Martens 741 Rate this article:

Be Intentional about Time Off

As winter and the pandemic wind down, it’s time to explore ways to disconnect, recharge, and recuperate, both on a budget and close to home

By Heidi Martens, Representative

Recently, a Local 306 member explained he felt it was very hard to leave his workplace. His employer often did not have a spare who could fill in for him, and as he is very loyal to his work, this means he doesn’t take much time away.

This got me thinking about work-life balance. Perhaps one of the impacts of the pandemic has been that many of us are simply doing just that. Work. And home life. The extras have been cut out, either almost completely, or for long periods of time, whether due to restrictions or mandates or various levels of being cautious over the last several months.

We’ve had to be intentional to avoid cabin fever. One lesson we probably have in common from the last two years is that we’ve been invited to return to hobbies and the great outdoors. I hope we don’t lose this.

We recently asked a list of bargaining committee nominees what kept their spirits up during the pandemic. The answers were relatively simple. Coffee. Walks. Cheesecake. Family. New hobbies like quilting. Kayaking. Baking sourdough loaves.

In January and February of this year, we had some cold days, which had me dreaming of beaches in Mexico. I’ve never done the resort thing, but I hear it’s nice!

But as the days got warmer and longer, I started dreaming of more realistic and local ways to take time away from work and the routines of home life.

Here is some inspiration for 2022:

•  Hike or walk in provincial parks or on locally run trails (e.g., the Brokenhead Wetland Interpretive Trail northeast of Winnipeg).

•  Visit a few Manitoba attractions.

– Dinosaurs in Morden?! Visit the Canadian Fossil Discovery Centre.

– Outdoor pools? The Altona Aquatic Centre looks neat!

•  Find a new bakery in Winnipeg and enjoy a picnic at a park.

There are lots of ways to disconnect, recharge, and recuperate, both on a budget and close to home. Sometimes we need longer breaks away from work and routine. Sometimes, a day outing can do the trick.

So, do you have vacation time planned? Are you laid off for the summer? Do you have a personal day you could use? Remember, these are different than sick days.

Let us know how you plan to recharge and disconnect! Email us your ideas and photos at

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