I have been blessed in my life to have spent many a summer day at my Uncle George’s Cabin with my lifelong mate Linda.  Now I can understand how generous it was of him to let us vacation at his cabin…a lot.  My husband had a similar legacy at Caledon Lake, one which is now being passed down to our children.  So what is it about these places that are magical? 

I think it’s the space we create, a space where hygiene is a lower priority than fun and frolic, that riding bikes without helmets, going to bed late, playing cards, roasting marshmallows and swimming endless hours are the day’s absolutes.

There are many fond memories from places like those and it’s because the rules were not nearly as important as the freedom.  Maybe it’s time we re-assess our rules, both personally and professionally and look for a bit more freedom.  I know as an employee the more freedom they gave me the harder I worked and the more loyal I became, maybe it’s about boundaries not rules, or about end games with different approaches.  Maybe it’s not about being the same and doing the same but rather ending up at the same place? 

My Uncle George’s cabin afforded me the freedom to feel independent before I really was, just like Caledon Lake allows our children the freedom to choose their day as long as they are staying within the boundaries.  That kind of liberation teaches them control and choice.  It also teaches them community and how to look after each other, siblings or friends. 

It might be time to introduce some Lakeside freedoms to your workplace and workforce.  After all it has either kept us coming back for generations or seeking similar surrounding to offer to our own children.  Freedom is far more important than a well-rounded meal…at least some of the time.   

The decision to create that communal engaging free-thinking space is absolutely up to you.  Not to abolish policy and process but remember fun and frolic can be equally noteworthy and important…happy marshmallow roasting, bike riding, hotdog eating, team building days.