I notice it every single year. Fall marks the end of summer, the beginning of the school year, and a flurry of productivity for me. And then, like clockwork, Halloween passes, the first chill sets in, and I’m much more interested in finding a new TV series to watch on Netflix than I am creating anything groundbreaking. The most productive thing I want to do is make Christmas lists and gifts. Work? Only because I have bills to pay.
When I worked in an office, this annual slump was managed by a list of daily tasks and a jovial attitude that said “come on, guys, you don’t want to work either!” I kept my bosses happy enough and enjoyed the security of a regular paycheck, confident that I’d focus more on getting ahead again when the new year had come.
When I went to work at home, I no longer had a boss to convince, but I still had clients to please. But again, I met deadlines and kept up with the current workload without any energy dedicated to marketing or expansion.
Now that I’m working full time while also traveling full time, my productivity has slowed to a crawl. The heart beat is barely perceptible, just strong enough to keep the blood moving from the brain, to the lungs, and back to the heart for another round. The end of the year is and always has been for treading water, regrouping for the next burst of growth, and this year is no different.
I am reminding myself of this cycle every single day right now.
I have to remember that this is the natural way of things and not a sign that I am suddenly lazy, losing all talent, or heading towards the poor house. More importantly, I don’t want to squander this time with my worry and disapproval. This is, I’m convinced, the time when we are supposed to hunker down and prepare for the mad blossoming that happens in the spring. This is when all of the Earth quiets down and closes in on itself in order to burst forth with new life a few months down the road.
This is when we rest. This is when we think. This is when we move more slowly and seem to be just getting by, but only so that we can thrive when it’s time. This year I’m committed to embracing this season of hibernation.
What about you?