We’re under pressure to design and deliver innovative solutions to customers while besting the competition. It’s exhausting being great. It’s exhausting to just be in the race. We push ourselves with sugar, caffeine and other vices to keep the ideas flowing, keep moving forward. But let’s face it: your body is not a computer. There comes a point when you need a break. You may have a retreat close by, an oasis right around the corner that can help you recharge. I came by mine quite accidentally.Family surprised me this weekend with a trip to West Baden Springs Hotel in Southern Indiana, a close drive from Indianapolis, Cincinnati, Louisville, St. Louis. Known as the Eighth Wonder of the World, the building’s free-spanning dome was the world’s largest from 1902 until 1913 and the largest in the United States until 1963. The dome is spectacular, but what really sold me was the hotel’s purpose: a health and wellness retreat built on mineral springs. Within minutes of arriving I felt stress lifting from my shoulders, creativity sparking, ideas flowing. I’d like to think it was the spirit of the hotel doing the job it was created to do.
West Baden and French Lick were the Vegas of their time; people traveled from Chicago and all over to gamble, revel in jazz and, of course, booze it up. Even today, French Lick has more of a party feel, West Baden is more sedate, a place to rejuvenate. The spa is fantastic; the pool is 25 meter/built for workouts; the gardens and grounds invite strolling, hiking, horseback riding; the veranda is the place to curl up with a book and the atrium itself is full of elegant couches and dozing guests.
Instead of sitting at your desk battling with that report, presentation, pitch or story, break away for a day or two and experience how much more easily your ideas flow. Find that unexpected gem of a getaway in your neighborhood–the time spent away from work could actually make you much more productive when you return.