any extended period of leave from one’s customary work, especially for rest, to acquire new skills or training, do research, travel, etc.
a break or change from a normal routine (as of employment)
Origin: Relating to the sabbath (rest or cessation)
I wasn’t going to tell you about this – I was just going to quietly sneak out the back door and hope that no one noticed. But something about that didn’t feel right. I do my best to be as transparent with you as possible about what is going on with me – how I am continually growing and learning – so that you can learn from my experiences.
About two weeks ago I felt bled dry. I was working constantly yet not getting anywhere. I took an impromptu trip to my hometown (where I rode a horse) and since then have been unconsciously scaling back – everything that wasn’t necessary started getting cut. I lucked out with The Daily Love publishing that post last week because I wasn’t planning on writing a blog post! I stopped scheduling consultations for new clients.
Instead I read a lot, watched movies, and journaled.
Two days ago I realized that I was taking a sabbatical… unconsciously. As a result, I wasn’t getting the full benefit because I hadn’t given myself permission to fully embrace what I needed. So I decided to take a sabbatical – consciously. I created an intention for this time, some guidelines for technology and work (because I can’t abandon my commitments to clients out of the blue), and a list of things I want to do.
I know I could schedule posts and social media updates go out while I’m taking time off – that’s what the business advice would tell me to do so people don’t “forget” about me. But something about that doesn’t seem genuine. Without my presence and intention when things are published, it just feels empty.
So we are taking a break together.
Does it mean I won’t work? Not at all. I have commitments that I can’t just abandon. But I have put parameters on how much and when I work. I will have a few hours of focused productivity and meeting with clients a day, and beyond that I’m going to be off the computer. I’m taking a Facebook and (gulp) Instagram fast. My computer has a bed time hours before mine. No newsletters or posts; all my writing will be unfocused and creative, welcoming whatever is coming next. All those hours sucked into the vortex of the internet are going to be replaced with time in the real world.
Here are my guidelines for my sabbatical:
- Be focused and get things done as efficiently as possible. Be completely present in everything I do (no multi-tasking).
- At every step, ask myself “Is this necessary right now?” If it’s not, do it later (or not at all)
- As few hours as possible in front of a computer screen. Screen curfew from 9pm to 9am (the window may get even smaller)
- Social media fast
- Check email once a day
- Take the internet off my phone
- Do an entire day (or more) free from technology
With all that extra time, I am going to focus on clearing out what I no longer need and filling myself up with inspiration. Lots of reading (Sacred Contracts and The Signature of All Things, which I am SO in love with right now), journaling, going to museums, watching movies, spending time with loved ones, and cooking delicious food.
I’m not sure how long this sabbatical will be. It could be a week, it could be a month. Something tells me it’s somewhere in between. That this doesn’t have to be long, just intentional.
All of this feels like it’s preparing me to create something big – so get ready. I have a feeling lots of changes are going to happen quickly when I come back, and I’m excited to share them with you.