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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.

vacations for families

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When it comes to family reunion vacation planning the sky is the limit. But planning one that's affordable yet fun may seem to be quite a challenge. Not to worry. There are many ways to cut down the expense of family reunion vacations. Here are a number of money saving tips that can reduce costs up to 75%.

1. Book as many attendees as possible for deep discounts based on group rates.
2. Consider using your senior discount privileges where applicable.
3. Google vacation destinations and concentrate of agencies that offer the best rate cuts
4. Use entertainment books that feature destination discount rates and coupons
5. Use travel agencies that are sponsored by the company a family member works for.

Don't Forget The Children
Often family reunions cater to adults. But for your family reunion to be a fun and exciting venture for all it's important to plan a child-friendly event. Children get discounts almost as often and seniors so take a head count. Consider the what activities the children will enjoy. The first step is getting the children involved in the family reunion planning process. Ask the children to create a long list of possible activities all would enjoy.

Family Vacation Resorts
Family vacation resorts are the ideal destination for family reunion events. Best of all there are great price reductions for groups or 10, 20 or more. Everything you need to enjoy a relaxing reunion vacation is just a few steps away. Families can enjoy exotic food, cool down with a flavorful variety of refreshing drinks by sunny pools.

Camping and Nature Trails
For families that love the outdoors nothing could be better than breathing in the cool mountain air at a camp site, taking long hikes along mountain trails and getting cozy in a log cabin warmed by a natural log fire. You'll find great discounts in the fall. Nature lovers are captivated by mysterious caverns, fishing, bird watching, rock climbing and more. Families can take a nature tour by horseback and visit lakes and streams along the way.

City Bus Tours
Luxury bus tours are one of the most inexpensive ways to travel while still enjoying a classy reunion event. What could be more exciting than taking a bus trip to a big city hotel with indoor malls and funky sidewalk shops awaiting your perusal. Visit trendy restaurants and try out a variety of cultural cuisine. Take in a Broadway show and top it all off with breakfast in bed the next morning before checkout.

At A Theme Park
What kid would not enjoy the amazing rides, games, contests and competitions had at one of the popular theme parks, formerly known as amusement parks or water parks. Theme parks feature discount coupons for groups. Theme parks includes all kinds of amusements from roller coasters to outdoor stunt shows with a variety of themes. Want to make sure your kids have a great time? Take them to a theme park and they will be eternally grateful.

Family Reunion Cruises
Now exotic vacations on luxury cruise lines are the in thing for groups determined to relax, be pampered, served while enjoying an unforgettable family reunion. Best of all group packages, last minute booking and off season cruise travel can save you up to 75% off standard costs. Family business meetings can be held in cruise conference rooms and ball rooms. Some of the more popular cruise ships are listed below.

Cruise Ships

Carnival
Celebrity
Costa
Crystal
Cunard
Disney
Windstar Holland
Norwegian
Princess
Radisson
Royal Caribbean
Seaborn
Silver Sea

So where to go? Where ever the ocean and seas can take you. Some of the more popular cruise destinations ideal for family reunions are listed below.

Family Reunion Cruise Destinations

Africa
Alaska
Asia
Australia
New Zealand
Canada
Caribbean
Europe
Hawaii Mediterranean
Mexico
Panama Canal
Scandinavia
South America South Pacific
Southern Caribbean
Transatlantic
Transpacific
U.S. Pacific

There is ample space for everyone and it's a whole lot of fun for all ages. It's less work, less planning and a lot more time to enjoy the family. Well planned cruise vacations are economical with more fun and relaxation then ever before.


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