The Rhode Island Slide

Not many people know what the Rhode Island slide is. If you’ve ever visited the state, you would know. Some people think it’s a ride at an amusement park, while others think it’s an alcoholic drink.

I won’t keep you in suspense any longer. The Rhode Island slide happens, when you come to a stop sign and you “slide” through without really stopping. Of course, this is against the law, but in a state with so many people, it is something that is done quite often.

I saw this happen the other day and it nearly caused an accident. I started to think about the concept of the “slide”. Is it because the driver is pressed for time, lazy and doesn’t want to stop or just taking a right turn? I really don’t know.

In my business as a virtual assistant, I can usually set my own schedule. I’m usually not pressed for time, but then again, it is difficult to concentrate on work, when it’s the perfect summer or autumn day.

The idea behind the Rhode Island Slide is to keep going without stopping. It’s useful in winter, when the roads are icy and stopping for any reason will probably strand you on a piece of ice. You will need a push to get going and no one wants to get out of their cars or trucks to help you, but they will repeatedly blow their horns, as if the horns will get your car off the ice patch.

I realized that I practice the “Rhode Island Slide” in my work as a virtual assistant. If I’m working on something, I will delay a meal, forego a television program or give up anything else, just to continue doing the task at hand.

Is this the workaholic syndrome or just selfishness? Just as wrong as it is to disobey certain traffic laws, so too, as a virtual assistant, I have to portion the tasks in my schedule. All work and no play is not good. My week-ends fly by, because I’m working on the business portion of my business. I’m not working on client work, but still I’m working on my business.

For some reason, I can’t seem to take a full day or 2 days off from work. Like the Rhode Island Slide, once you do it, you want to do it over and over. I initially worried about wanting everything to be perfect in my business and started working on week-ends. Now, it seems like a way of life.

Funny thing, though, about the Rhode Island Slide, once you get caught and get a ticket, it cures the need to do it again. In my business, I need to break this working week-end cycle and plan other things to do.

I have already taken steps to do that. Next week-end, I am going out for the day on Saturday. My friend and I are still undecided about what we’re going to do, but I will be away from my business and take time for me to relax and get some fresh air.

She’s a great friend and makes me laugh. Whenever I feel down about something, she is there to make me see the other side of things and that is so helpful. She’s a fun-filled, carefree person and that’s just what I need to break the cycle.

Later on this month, I will be going to Mystic, Connecticut for the International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP) Education Forum. I am only going for one day – Saturday, but this is an excellent way for me to learn new technology, new office procedures and network with a group of like-minded individuals.

There is a centennial celebration in the next town and I have penciled that in for one of the upcoming week-ends. It will be difficult to break the week-end work cycle, but I have to do it.

I wrote about this last week, too, because old habits are hard to break, but I will use the Stop Sign as a visual reminder. Stop means stop. Stay still for at least a few seconds. As a virtual assistant, “Stop” means stop working on week-ends (or at least one day on the week-end) and look around and see what going on and what I’m missing.

Who know? It can turn into a networking event and I could get a new client!

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