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Encourage staff and managers to take their vacation time. Even a day or two of vacation can make a huge difference in employee motivation. Now is the best time to plan the summer schedule and ensure that your employees are taking those earned and deserved vacation days and Texas .

USA Today published that some 51% of executives surveyed by Accountemps, Menlo Park, Calif., a specialized staffing service for temporary accounting, finance, and bookkeeping professionals, maintain they are more productive after a vacation than before.

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Now there is more proof that vacations increase employee productivity and even improve overall health, as the Travel Industry Association released its conclusions from studies of data that looked at the health benefits of vacation travel.

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"Vacation used to be a luxury but in today's world it has become a necessity." - Author Unknown

Tomorrow, my family, a couple friends, and I will leave for a beach vacation at my favorite place on the planet -- Rosemary Beach, Florida. We have made this same trip on and off for years. Rosemary Beach is idyllic for a family trip -- it's beautiful, quaint, and safe. And importantly, it is home to one of Florida's most beautiful beaches along the Emerald Coast.

To put it mildly, I love the beach. I cannot adequately describe in words why I am so drawn there. I've often thought it might be because, as science teaches us, man's body fluid is basically identical to the mineral make-up of the ocean water. As babies, we swim in the ocean of our mother's womb. Maybe man has a life-long desire to return to his earliest environment.

I love it all. The warm wind on my forearms, the smell of the ocean mixed with suntan lotion, the feel of the sand on my feet. I love the way the ocean wind dries my skin and blows in my hair. I love to think about what is going on out there -- deep in that ocean. A day in the sun brings a relaxation I cannot attain elsewhere.

On my beach vacations, I have three goals in mind. First, I want to simply enjoy what I have described above. I also treasure the time with my wife and children when we're not so busy with the obligations and distractions of our everyday lives. My wife and I can take long beach walks and have long talks. I love to ride my rented bicycle every place I need to go. I love to eat fresh seafood, sip the finest bourbon, and smoke good cigars. I will read a fun book.

My second goal will be to use some time each day to reflect on the past year. I will look at how things in my life have changed and what has remained constant. I will relish in personal victories and I also will make some resolutions for the year to come. This year, my most overriding thoughts will be about trying to live in the present moment, trying to live more mindfully, and in a more positive way. I want to slow down. I want so deeply to be a better and more positive person.

The last goal I will have is to recharge. I am mindful that my "current" needs recharging from time to time. I will rest a good bit. There will be no stress -- my most arduous task will be shaving, and my most pressing decision will be how many times a day I should hit the Sugar Shak for ice cream. I will play silly games and hopefully laugh out loud on more than one occasion. I will return home ready for another year.

Each day, I will make my marks in the sand -- my footprints. But just like every year, the ocean will soon wash them away. There will be no trace of my having been by that ocean save for the traces left in my soul; I hope this year I leave meaningful traces there.

Yes, I am looking forward to my vacation. I need it, and I'm going to enjoy it. If you can, please try to do the same for yourself. We all need time for rest, reflection, and recharging. Peace.

Copyright 2011. True Self Enterprises, Inc.

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So, you live in the Dallas/Ft.Worth area and would like a brand new experience during your vacation this year. You have probably done and seen just about everything there is to offer within a few hundred miles of the metroplex. Last spring break you and the family rode the coasters at Six Flags, or built castles of sand on the Gulf Coast. Possibly, you traveled to the Texas Hill Country, witnessed some old German heritage, and felt the chill of the river at Schlitterbahn. However, this year, the options don't seem as plentiful. Could it be there is an area almost untouched by man, smothered in wilderness and beauty? An area where people of all ages can enjoy. One that can be reached via automobile in about three hours from Dallas. The answer is yes, but most North Texas residents don't even know it exists.

Welcome to Southeast Oklahoma and the Beavers Bend and Broken Bow Lake recreational areas. Now, some of you may be thinking Oklahoma is nothing but windy plains and tornado warnings. However, the far Eastern section of the state is covered with Smoky Mountain style wilderness. In particular, the far Southeastern town of Broken Bow and the area just to the north. This is where Beavers Bend State Park and Broken Bow Lake are located. The state park offers activities ranging from horseback riding to fly fishing. The lake is clear and cold, as the water runs out of the Kiamichi Mountains year round. Trees and jutting rocks surround the lake, as well as it's pristine shoreline. Even though it is a man made lake, you will see little evidence that man has even been there.

While visiting, you will have a multitude of lodging options. Most vacationers choose to stay in a private Beavers Bend cabin rental or camp out at Beavers Bend State Park. The private cabins range from $75 - $600 per night and can accommodate anywhere from one person to a dozen or so. If you are looking for a luxury vacation cabin or a Beavers Bend getaway, one of the local cabin management companies should be able to suit your needs. It is recommended to book your cabin several months out for major holidays and spring and summer vacations. If you decide to pitch a tent or bring an RV, make arrangements early, as spots are limited and fill up fast during Spring and Summer breaks.


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