THERE is nothing like getting away from it all to come back and see your life and work with new eyes. Things that you thought 'everybody did' you realise that not everybody does.

It can be quite thought provoking, especially if you are fortunate enough to have experienced a different culture. It makes you ask yourself - why do I think that my way is the only way of doing things? What have I seen that I might incorporate into my life and work?

When I was away recently, I experienced time with a couple of different church communities in a different culture. I found it really interesting and it challenged me to look at some of the ways that I live. I wondered to myself if I could change these habits, in order to fit in better with the way I try to live as a Christian. For instance, by eating less meat and recycling and upcycling even more of our materials, to do a little bit more for the planet. Having looked at how others live made me look at my Christian life with new eyes.

Getting away and taking time to stand back can be one of the most important benefits of having time away. If we could all incorporate these small things into the way we live on our return, then perhaps this will make the benefits of holidays last longer. Certainly longer than so many of those tacky souvenirs we did not really have room for in our suitcases.

The Rev Beverly Locke, St Mary’s Church, Ambleside