How long has it been since you've had a 100% break from your work? No e-mail. No phone messages. Nothing.
For me, it had been years - six or seven, at least. Always checking and responding to e-mail while on vacation, even blogging from the road, I never really and truly left work behind. There was always a piece of me that stayed engaged.
As my trip to Cambodia and Singapore approached, I was gearing up to do the same thing. The Universe had other ideas.
The day before I left I was talking with the oh-so-wise Nancy Solomon, who knew how much I needed to step away from it all for a real break. She could see that I was mentally preparing to take my work with me, and encouraged me to commit to leaving it behind completely. "Let it go," she urged. "Just let it go. Trust that everything will be OK."
Much as I wanted to, I couldn't do it. There was a part of me that was afraid that things would fall apart if I weren't actively engaged - and then what would I do. I was a little surprised at how impossible it felt to simply say, "OK, I'm leaving work behind."
So I left, fully intending to check e-mail regularly once I got to Cambodia. And then the Universe intervened... "No, Curt," it seemed to say. "It's time for you to leave it all behind for a while." I got online to check my e-mail and...nothing. Not a single e-mail. Not even spam!
In the rush to get to the airport, I had left my computer on at home, which spent its time merrily downloading all my e-mails (which were subsequently deleted from the server). So none of them were accessible remotely. Suddenly, I had no choice but to leave it all behind. I couldn't check my e-mail, even if I wanted to.
It didn't take me long to fall into 100% travel and exploration mode - and more importantly, to leave work behind. It was delicious.
And now I'm back. And I'm ready to change the world.
Brought to you by Curt Rosengren, Passion Catalyst TM