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Monday, September 14, 2009

End of the first sabbatical trimester

It's been a little over a month since the sabbatical started, so about 1/3 of the way done. Here are a few of my thoughts/impressions at this juncture, and some updates:

The day goes by really fast. The first week or so, it was because I would wake up, read up on my fantasy leagues, play some Mario Kart Wii... But since then, I haven't watched any TV,  played any video games, nor sat around wasting time during the day, and a below average amount during the evening. Granted, the reason for that is because the Milwaukee Brewers fell out of the playoff race and the fall TV season hasn't started yet, but it goes to show that even when you're not wasting time, the day goes fast.

I set a goal to get 4 hours of business related work done a day. I'm still struggling very hard to get there... I'm still at 2-3 hours. I discovered that my house is not conducive to getting my work done, because it's a mess from lack of maintenance since I've been living there the last 8 years. So I've spent a good amount of time fixing it up, with the latest project decluttering (4 bags to Goodwill last week) and painting the kitchen. I want to make "pimp my home office" the next project. I figure if I can make my office an inviting place to work, it'll get me to 4 hours a day a lot easier. Right now I'm compensating by going to Starbucks, Caribou Coffee, Panera, and trying to discover new places to work. I still plan on going to these places to work, but the home office might get me the incremental hours I'm looking for...

The biggest learning for me is to focus on one thing at a time. It's REALLY hard to do that. I'm a divergent thinker, lots of random ideas and thoughts I like to chase. It is one of my strengths, but I do need to hunker down and focus if I want any of those ideas to take off! So I've changed my line of thinking. My original goal was to start 3 ventures, to get failures out of the way. Now I'm going to focus on one project, NOTtheBookStore.com, and then with any leftover time in my 4 hour a day goal, I'll work on other things.

Overall, this has been a great experience. It's been a great mental break from corporate life. The work I do for my own ventures doesn't feel that much like work... it's more getting over fears. I think because of that, I'm not mentally drained at the end of the day like I am from work. Plus not having to fight traffic helps too. In the next "trimester" of my sabbatical, I hope to get to 4 hours of work a day or more, really driving NTBS, and making my house a place I love to work at.


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