It's that time of year when my back and/or shoulder acts up, when it's hard to sleep, when multiple to-do lists (professional, personal, kids' schools, family gatherings) run on repeat through my mind. A fellow Founder and Mom remarked that she's the one responsible for creating the magic of year-end in her household, all the while building her startup. I can relate.In response, I'm trying out an intentional respite idea here. How can I close "the office" during the last week of the year? What do I need to put into place to support stepping away for a week? This was so much easier when I worked for someone else and merely had to find coverage and fill folks in on what to do in my absence.
There are a couple reasons it's hard for me to step away:
1. I like my work. It gives me purpose and immediate feedback in ways that being present in other areas of my life doesn't. Don't get me wrong -- there's immense purpose in other areas of my life such as with my family. But the feedback simply isn't as immediate or obvious to me there as it is in building a startup. Maybe if I had a different skill-set or psychological make-up feedback would feel just as tangible in those other areas.
2. There's always more to do in a startup. The work's never done so it's hard to quiet my heart and engage in non-work activities while what I've left undone runs through my mind.
In short, work serves as an escape and motivator. There are a few practices I might employ over the coming week to prepare to unplug. I might physically write down what needs doing then toss the list to symbolically clear it from my mind. I may set non-work intentions for the day and seek out where I can join God in His plans for the day. I'm also going to set aside some quiet time each day to ground me during the less-quiet-times of the day (I've got a 6yo and 9yo, folks).
Thanks for reading and may your year-end be peaceful and reflective, too.