When I was working on my memoir a few years ago, I went on two separate self-designed retreats where I rented an AirBnB for a week or two, holed up with my manuscript, and spent each day focusing on the task at hand.
I spread out the pages of each chapter, re-read notes from my editor, and recorded sections of the book to listen to for flow and consistency. No meals to prepare, no laundry to be done. No one really aware of where I was.
I’ve re-created that retreat environment again these past couple of days for a 48-hour end-of-year planning session, only this time I didn’t rent a car and go off into the woods of Vermont or the Pioneer Valley. I got a room in the financial district (FiDi) exactly 11 miles from home.
My plan was to map out 2020 – what I would like to offer my clients, followers and readers in the year ahead. Great plans have been made!
But let me tell you…it’s exhausting. After I completed my ideation for book clubs, I had to lie down. I slept for over an hour, and it was the middle of the morning. After that, I tackled an exclusive Mastermind offer I will be making. Again, I took out my calendar, planned the schedule, made my wish list of participants, and called the venue where I’d like to hold these groups. And after that, you guessed it. Another nap!
It’s exhausting to reach into your heart and mind for development work. It’s the culmination of a lifetime of information, challenges and risks. People may say no, reject the idea, or have other plans. Equally scary, and what I’ve been fortunate enough to experience, is that there could be waiting lists for my offers, abundance of interest, and requests for private groups I hadn’t even contemplated as happened this year.
If and when you plan your own retreat, be sure to build in time for rest and relaxation. The hotel I chose happens to have a Happy Hour at 5pm where wine and snacks are served. I made sure to attend these and last night met three pretty wonderful folks sitting around a coffee table. I realized I hadn’t spoken to anyone, other than a waiter, for 24 hours and was bursting with excitement when I told them what I was up to. It recharged my engine for my final lap this morning where I put my plans onto the calendar and packed up all my markers and calendars for the ride back uptown.