I did something recently I haven't done in literally years—I totally disconnected for almost a whole week. No computer. No email. No phone really. It was weird. When you work for yourself, from your house, you're pretty much always at work. I check my email from the time I wake up until I go to bed. Same with the phone. Anyone wants to reach me, they call my business line, and unless I'm doing something like eating, I'll probably answer it. So I'm kind of always at work. (Which, incidentally, doesn't mean I'm always working. Just at work.)
But we went on vacation last week, and since I don't own a cell phone or an iPhone or any sort of mobile device that has Internet access (that's another story), I was completely out of the loop. The first day was pretty hard. I kept having bursts of panic that something was going dreadfully wrong and I wasn't there to fix it. I imagined my largest clients writing me with an emergency, and me not there. Even though they knew I was out of town. Didn't matter. I imagined new clients calling, needing something done, and no me. Gradually, though, the worry went away and I got more used to it. Then it was almost nostalgic. So this is what life was like before I became plugged in, before I opted to work at home ... You're much more present in the moment, much less distracted by the potential of incoming communication.
When I finally did check my email, I sat there waiting for the folder to open, wondering if any of the things I worried about had actually happened. And naturally, I had a zillion emails. But it was 99% spam and 1% no big deal.
Ah. So I actually can take a vacation and my world doesn't fall apart. What a nice thing to know.