An Outside idea from Gareth Dean : The Importance of a Break

An Outside idea from Gareth Dean : The Importance of a Break

A great honour to introduce the Oi newsletter, with so many illustrious business people before me and it going out to such a superb and diverse group of legends.

Here goes! Last weekend brought home the importance of stepping away from the computer/phone business for a couple of days, when I tackled the Devon coast-to-coast cycle with my business partner and wife, Nicola.

We have both been making a big effort to prioritise self-care this year, after a pretty horrendous 2020 left us low on energy, big on waistline and tense. Both of us have upped our game with exercise this year, me with daily swims in the Thames (yes I am one of those cold water evangelists) and Nicola with body combat and Pilates. We also both love to cycle, although we can’t do that together most of the time.

Last weekend we changed that by tackling our first ever cycle tour, taking the train down to Barnstaple, before cycling from Ilfracombe to Plymouth on National Cycle Network Route 27. 100 miles of mainly dedicated cycle tracks with our luggage on our bikes and the lack of traffic making it easy to cycle side-by-side and chat.

We did talk work, but not the current stresses or priorities, more long-term, aspirational and strategic. We also had time to switch off, we didn’t have a laptop with us, reception was pretty rubbish most of the time and we were determined not to do work things.
It worked, we had a great weekend and we are already looking at new routes to tackle. Both of us had a good reset and can tackle the week with more energy and some new ideas. As a business owner it is tempting to just work and work to push the business on or survive a pandemic, but it doesn’t work. A break is needed and for us the cycling weekend was perfect and neither of us would have imagined ourselves doing that a year ago.

I implore you to take a break from your screen each day and do some walking, cycling, swimming, yoga or whatever, but also take a trip away and do something different. Trust me, you won’t regret it!


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