Sabbatical 3/3

Three Top challenges for a meaningful Sabbatical and how to deal with doubts

Your top 3 challenges in living a fulfilled and meaningful sabbatical are:

Not being clear.

Not being focused.

Not being relaxed.

“Relaxed?” you might ask. Indeed, if you are clear and you are focused, then there no need not to be relaxed. Tensing up will not help you. Becoming dull, lazy or mindless is not being relaxed. Chilling out is not being relaxed. You can pursue a meaningful life while being relaxed – without hammock and beer. Relaxed means not being stressed. Not being stressed means balancing your capacity with your tasks. As if your life depended on it.

Of course you have doubts and concerns. “What do you mean “my first day back in the office”?” I hear you say. Maybe you are not sure what you want to do after this. Maybe you don’t even know what to do with this. So you learn Spanish eventually and then what? You live in Hong Kong, work for an Australian company, go to Thailand on vacation and love Japanese food. True, you can read Paulo Coelho in any language. But there is more to life than just functioning – I reckon. Share your concerns with others and talk about your doubts. The answer might lie in the way you feel about things when you hear yourself talking. If you are looking for a wholesome journey, then start by tuning in to yourself – as a body and mind experience. Ticking off boxes, fulfilling tasks and reaching set targets will often not make you  happy if your heart is not in it.

One more thing: Document your journey in some way!

You don’t need to have an agency working for you nor do you need to have your own blog, Facebook page or twitter account dedicated to your sabbatical experience. However, documenting your experience in some way or another will be helpful. It helps you reflect on you aspirations and adjust towards your goals if needed. It also helps you learn and develop a sense of achievement. Furthermore, while documenting your experience you will know if your heart is still in it – if the sabbatical carries your signature.

If your documentation enables feedback from friends and family or other followers, you can use this to help you stay focused and aware. Journal or reflect on your time spent ongoingly. Do not wait until the time is up or even worse postpone reflection to a later future stage. The learning and adjusting must happen while it happens: in the here and now! What you do later on can be done in addition.

Sabbatical being an amplified concept of life as such!