How I Spent My Sabbatical: Reshma Fernandes

SHIFT Sabbatical!A universal reaction to my taking a month-long sabbatical has been a combination of, “What?! How can I get that perk too? Can you get me a job at SHIFT?”

The answer to the first question is simple: put in five years towards growing your PR career at SHIFT and voila, you’re eligible. To the second, if you’re interested in a career here we have plenty of opportunities across our four offices — apply here!  This unusual perk (at least in the PR world) is offered so SHIFTers can take time off to pursue a passion that’s hard to attain within the rigors and demands of a full-time job and to come back with new perspectives and a fresh approach to account services.  

Here’s how I spent my month off:

Number #1 on my list has and will always be travel. I spent a third of my time traveling with my husband and son through Catalonia, Spain soaking in the sun, the crazy energy of the city of Barcelona, the culture, and of course the best café con leche and tapas. Number #2 was spending some quality time with my little boy and family.  I won’t bore you with the details but just taking each day as it comes and being part of my son’s world was the most rewarding experience. Can’t put a price tag on that!  And last but definitely not the least was number #3, doing something for myself to enrich my skills.  Learning new swimming strokes and improving technique has always been on my to-do list, but IHow would you spend your sabbatical? always manage to push it off.  I bit the bullet, arranged for lessons and have learned a new stroke, mastered bilateral breathing and improved my freestyle and backstroke so much that swimming has become a pleasure again.  Next step – working up the guts to jump into an Olympic-sized pool (gulp).

There were countless other little things, from experimenting with new recipes in the kitchen to planning our upcoming move to exploring Manhattan and enjoying a rare evening at the New York City Ballet. The month went by in a blink of an eye, and I can firmly attest to time flying when you’re having fun (thank you SHIFT)! 

I returned to work refreshed and ready for new challenges with new perspectives on approach, time management, prioritization, work-life balance and much more.  It’s hard to believe that a month has already gone by. Time is flying again.

Reshma Fernandes

Account Director


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