Cut a Firebreak
When a forest fire burns uncontrollably, firefighters do not fight the fire directly. They move ahead of the fire's path and cut the trees down so that the fire has nothing to consume. When the fire reaches the firebreak, it burns itself out.
When our schedules burn out of control, we look ahead and plan a day we can stop to regain our sanity. These days off function as firebreaks. Or, to change analogies, they allow us to "come up for air" after we have been submerged too long. The anticipation of the day off ahead (or the vacation ahead) helps us persevere until a break is possible. Note: To avoid out-of-control demands on our time, Christie and I schedule our days off three to six months in advance. Even if we cannot honor every one, planning ahead keeps us from going for weeks without a break.
"Adapted from "Simplify: 106 Ways to Uncomplicate Your Life," by Paul Borthwick. Copyright 2007. Authentic Publishing. Used with permission.