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By The Pollack Group

With summer in full force, now is the time when most families and
young professionals take time out of their hectic schedules to go on vacation
and “unplug” so to speak. In an industry like Public Relations where there is a
demand for 24-hour attention and constant news monitoring, the concept of
unplugging isn’t always the easiest.

I recently returned from a one-week sailing trip around some of
the more remote islands in Croatia. In places like Vis and Palmižana, the
internet is hard to come by and a print copy of the Wall Street Journal isn’t
available for what feels like 100 kilometers. So how does one stay on top of
news and still feel like they’ve made the most of a trip?

There are probably many ways, but here is my experience with it.
 Hoping to get unplugged without guilt, I did some pre-trip preparations
for it.  I made sure to leave a detailed set of instructions for my
colleagues along with a brief itinerary.  To avoid international roaming
charges, a friend recommended I download WhatsApp so co-workers, clients and
reporters alike had a way to reach me when cell service was limited—which very
often it was.

When it came to news monitoring, I didn’t want to be tethered to
my phone or constantly refreshing my browser, so I downloaded two daily
newsletters: TheSkimm, an efficient way
to catch up on general news and The Street Sheet, a summary of what is happening in the markets.
With that said, I did try to limit myself to only checking emails first thing
in the morning and again right before bed. Of course, that never stopped me or
any of my traveling companions from immediately asking, “What is the WI-FI
password?” the second we got to a restaurant, bar or café. Even when we were
lucky enough to find free WI-FI, it was always important to be mindful of the
time change. We might have been on island time, but for reporters and clients,
a deadline is a deadline.

In the end, if you love the work you’re doing, you won’t even need
to unplug. Take advantage of a long uninterrupted flight or a quiet moment with
nature, and you just might find the next disruptive idea or a well-crafted
pitch letter. Regardless, invest in a portable charger, you’ll have plenty of
battery life to take pictures–or more accurately secretly check email– while
out exploring.