The Plan of No Plan

Apr 17

Four Reasons to Unplug

The word sabbatical comes from the word Sabbath literally, “ceasing.” You can read about the biblical origins here, or the secular description here. As you can tell, the idea has been around for millennia.

People take sabbaticals for four reasons: To change track, rediscover their life purpose, rejuvenate, escape, or some combination of all of these. 

I fall into the rejuvenate camp. I’m not ready in any way to retire completely (did I say that forcefully enough?), but I need to rest for a bit.  

At some point, we’ve all experienced the need to do one of these four things in our work lives. It just seems too difficult to actually unplug.  

The steps are pretty simple, even though as we all know, simple doesn’t equal easy:

1. Figure out how much money you need.

2. Figure out what you want to accomplish, learn or change.

3. Find someone to cover for you (which seems like the hardest part). If you’re a sole proprietor, you can arrange for a fellow business owner (even a friendly competitor, with some written guidelines in place) to take over your work. Or, if you manage your money closely, you can spend some of it to give yourself start-up capital once your sabbatical is finished.  

4. Go. (This is actually the hardest part).

How would this help you? According to Fast Company, a sabbatical can be the best thing that happens to your business or career. They even advocate not making a lot of specific plans for your time off.

That’s my plan. No plan. At the beginning, at least, I’m going to wake up with no plan, other than to write, meditate and listen. I’m not sure at all what I’m going to hear. I’ve rolled out of bed for many years and jumped on my to do list without too much thought, so I am very curious to see what it’s like to bring consciousness to the process of “what shall I do next?”  

If you’d like to follow my journey without a plan, sign up for my blog. (Scroll down a bit once you get to the blog page to Subscribe to Small Business Warrior. You can either get it through RSS or as email).

Have you ever thought of taking a sabbatical? 

Ever taken one? What was it like? 

What did you learn? Comment below.

2 comments

  1. Sarah Privee /

    In 2012, after the sudden death of a friend, I made the decision to leave my position as VP with a large company. I knew that from a capitalistic perspective it looked crazy based on the salary and bonus potential involved but…deep inside, I knew that it was the right avenue to pursue. For almost a year, I looked for lower level positions within the same business model thinking this will be a snap as they will be hiring a very experienced person at much lower salary. Several leads but no offers. Then a followed some direction from a trusted friend and went on an interview at a church – my church! Today I am putting my faith and my beliefs into action and I love it. I make less money than Ive ever made but Im not racing around in airports, spending my nights in hotels away from my home and family. Today I am fulfilled and rewarded in ways I would never have considered in years past. Life is good!!

  2. Very interesting. I had a thought as I sat outside a book store… What if I just went with it. What if I didn’t make any plans and just went with the flow of what came up? So I googled “the plan of no plan” and your link came up. This is exactly where I am. I’ve an inspiration to write. All I want to seem to want to do is meditate and write, but work keeps getting in the way.
    Just thought I’d share that. I thought it was interesting

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