Concerning the Ebb and Flow of “Work”

Shawn Blanc writes:

You have to be inspired first before you can create.

You have to learn before you can teach.

You have to experience before you can share.

There is no shame in taking time “off” of your work, in order to learn something, experience something, and be inspired.

This is the ebb and flow of work. This is having multi-year cycles where we grow in our mastery of creation beyond just mastery of tools and workflows. This is why resting well is so valuable and why learning, thinking, and discovering cannot be underrated.

Over the last two years I've been going through a mental transformation to adapt to a mindfulness that mirrors what Shawn has conveyed in this piece. It's one of the reasons Course Code isn't updated daily and probably won't be for as long as I maintain a day job. I'm happy with that now but two years ago I was a mess between my stressful day job, independent consulting business and expecting myself to write something of any value. It's difficult to find inspiration when that's how you spend your life. It's not that I regret that time in my life, I'm glad I was able to learn from it in my mid-twenties just as we found out Courtney was pregnant with our son. I've been on an interesting road to a more thoughtful investment of my time since. That has included a couple of dramatic changes in our lives and spans of time where I retracted from aspects of life that I needed to let rest (this site included). Overall it's lead me to have longer sprints of inspiration and creativity and has helped me continue to hone in on what's worth my time.

If you're stressed and pulling yourself a hundred different ways, take a break to assess and find what you truly want for your life. What's in the way of letting that be the driver for the decisions you make? If you need to make changes to get there, do it. It will take time (likely more time than you're imagining) but I can tell you that it's worth it. Rest and reflect so you can move forward.