Welcome to With Less - a weekly newsletter dedicated to helping legal creatively do more with less.
Down below in the roundup, I link to an article advocating the importance of rest and why you should always book your next vacation. Planning and blocking vacation time have so many benefits, but I'm not here to champion that.
Rather, I want you to consider doing something similar for for yourself your work. I want you to help your future self by scheduling a personal development or personal retreat day.
I’m a big fan of Future Marty and I do what I can to help him out. One thing that Present Marty does to help Future Marty is blocking time and planning a quarterly personal “corporate” retreat.
Ever three months, I have a day blocked off in my schedule to work on big picture thinking on my business, Legal Adjacency, my work, and my skills.
Rather than try to squeeze time into my schedule and hoping that I am in the right mindset when I do find time, I block days for Future Marty to have the time to reflect, analyze, brainstorm, think, and otherwise strategize.
Let me share how I typically approach my quarterly retreat:
- My family is on board with me having the time and attention to focus. I get the day uninterrupted. I turn off and tune out of email and social media during the day.
- The retreat is “offsite.” In the COVID-times, which means I’ll be in a room in the house other than my office. Usually, it’s the basement.
- I plan a full schedule for the day. I plan blocks of time for looking back at the past quarter, business planning, brainstorming, goal setting, breaks, going for a long walk or time on the rowing machine (any other Water Rower fans out there?), reading articles that I’ve been saving, listening to music, stand-up comedy, or a podcast, etc. It’s all planned, and I generally stick to the schedule.
- The retreat always begins with a 10-minute guided meditation and then keep my eyes closed and set an intention for the day.
- There are sticky notes. Lots of sticky notes.
- I order lunch delivered from a local restaurant. This way I don’t have to deal with making lunch, and it adds to making the day seem special.
- I end the day with a some treat for myself (treat yo’ self indeed!). Most often, it’s opening up a new vinyl record and giving it a listen.
You don't have to go with the quarterly cycle. One retreat is
great. Take 5 minutes now and think about what you would do on your personal
retreat or personal development day. Write all of that down. Then, pick a day
in the next two months to have your first retreat.
Schedule the time and protect it. Schedule nothing else for that
day and do not even think about cancelling it.
Hit me up if you'd like to talk more about personal retreats.
Have a great rest of the week!