Monday, October 3, 2011

Shifting my calendar to carve out creative time

A couple of months ago I took an invigorating workshop with Dave Ellis, a leadership coach. One of my A-list projects was to begin moving towards working for money half-time and creating half-time without a big dip in income. When I met with my Ellis buddy a couple of weeks ago, I decided to take on that A-project like no kidding, so while I was on the cruise to Alaska I talked to my wise friend Melanie and we threw around ideas and I began to look at how I could do this. Here's my current plan:

1. Beginning in December, I'll be able to save a great deal of money every month that I currently pay for health insurance. Some of that money that I won't have to earn can buy some creative time.
2. I can hone my work estimating so that I don't lose money on the occasional project that takes much longer than I'd planned.
3. I can have a frank conversation with my financial advisor about how best to use my retirement resources to fund my creative life.
4. And I can begin to change my schedule.

At first, I thought I would want to have some long days to write each week, but the idea of only being available to my clients 3 days a week and one of those being Saturday didn't work too well. So now I'm working with the following possible schedule:

Creative: Mon, Tues, Thurs mornings and all day Friday
Paid work: Mon, Tues, Thurs afternoons, all day Wednesday and some Saturday hours if needed
Sundays are off and I'll try to funnel all appts into Tuesday afternoons.

This will take some getting used to and a kind of focus that I'm only used to having during writing retreats. I did not find myself jumping up to write this morning. Instead, I worked on a rush project for a client that I knew was coming. And I ran errands that I hadn't been able to do on Saturday. So I am facing the non-time-management issues around this too. Taking my work seriously, and as equally important. So I'm getting up to write tomorrow, no matter the resistance!

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