Julie Talenfeld of BoardRoom PR. Julie Talenfeld of BoardRoom PR.

Summertime is approaching, and you have a great vacation planned. But you feel guilty, leaving your office, clients and work behind. But thoughts of taking a much-needed break from the 24/7 grind can be turned into guilt-free marketing while hiking the mountains of the Rockies, cycling in Utah or wine tasting in Napa.

  • Learn how to network without jeopardizing the true meaning of vacation.

Seems like every June, July and August there is a stampede towards the mountains. Some of you have second homes in serene places where others also take refuge. While climbing the trails and enjoying the scenery – you are bound to run into business people who are now relaxed and happy to socialize. Use this opportunity to get together with biz contacts you’ve always wanted to know — but were too busy to schedule.

  • Check your vacation spot calendar.

Before you go—take the time to review your destination’s calendar of events. Consider securing tickets to concerts, fitness festivals, art shows and the theater.

Check out what’s happening on area Facebook pages by entering your vacation spot followed by summer events 2018. There are always fun things to do such as farmers’ markets, 5K runs/walks, wine tastings and interesting pop-up events. It’s great for checking what’s happening in and around your destination, seeing old friends and contacts – and meeting new ones in stress free environments.

  • Socially acceptable.

Everyone might be off doing their own thing, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still stay connected. Stay relevant by engaging on social media. An occasional post of something great happening will be noticed by old friends and new ones. You are also bound to see people you want to meet participating in activities you like as well.

  • Become a social media maven.

The digital world is dynamic. You must learn and take advantage of the evolution. Summer is a good time to read up on what’s new and learn to become a part of it. Buy a light read on social media to get up to speed and be a part of it—before you are left behind. You might event start your own Facebook or LinkedIn group all about your summer destination. This is an easy way to engage those heading out so they know what’s up. You’ll know what’s going on and be inclined to try new activities that you never knew existed.

  • Just Breathe.

Mindfulness is a big buzz word these days. Americans work harder than citizens from so many other countries. Don’t forget that life is short and can be gone in a flash. Now is a good time to try beginner yoga, meditation or pilates. If you don’t want to learn with others around, book a private lesson so you feel more comfortable. You might like it so much that you make it a part of your routine, and feel the mountain air and enjoy the sunflower covered fields.

  • That’s a wrap.

Once the summer winds down and people get back to work, check in with your contacts to reminisce about the great summer. Make it a point to meet up over coffee or lunch to share your experiences and slowly get back to the grind. You probably met someone and chatted about working together on a project or investing in a deal. Now is the time to make things happen with new friends and old.

Summer will be here in a blink. It’s important to plan now. Before you know it, you’ll be packing your bags and heading out of town. You don’t have to lose pace on your business development when you do.

Julie Talenfeld is the president of BoardroomPR, an integrated marketing and PR firm with offices in South Florida, Orlando, Tampa and Aspen, Colorado. She can be reached at jtalenfeld@boardroompr.com