A couple of weekends ago, I took a work vacation—not a vacation from work, but a work vacation. I took a few days off both from work and my family to focus on my business. I love my family, and I love my work, but sometimes both can be distracting. I have a lot going on with work: keeping track of the flips, keeping track of the rentals, planning the new office, and more. I have people to help me with all of that, but it still takes up time. I read a couple of books that talked about how important it is to have time to yourself for deep work. Deep work is when you are able to focus solely on a few tasks or problems without distraction. Those books contemplate how deep work and not outstanding intelligence or determination is how serious problems are solved. We are all so distracted in life that it is tough to focus very long on anything.
How did I get the idea to have a work vacation?
The two books I read that mentioned deep work or what I call a work vacation are:
In the War of Art, Steven Pressfield talks a lot about how he wrote The Legend of Bagger Vance while by himself with no distractions. Many very successful authors will isolate themselves while they write. They want no distractions from friends, family, social media, or other work. They want to concentrate on one project they are working on until it is finished. Multitasking is usually not the best way to accomplish amazing things in life.
I have a lot going on with my work:
- We have from 15 to 22 flips going on at a time.
- I have a real estate team with multiple licensed agents and support staff.
- I have 20 rentals, although they are managed by property managers.
- I have a blog, the podcast, and a Youtube Channel.
- I am a licensed agent myself, although I rarely—if ever—sell things myself now.
I have a lot of people who help with everything I do, but it is still easy to get distracted! I wrote a couple of weeks ago how I like to work in an office and not at home, which helps. There are still a lot of distractions in my office as well! I thought it would be a great idea to get away from everything and focus on my work without distractions.
What did I do for my work vacation?
My birthday was in February, and I told my wife I had a weird request for my birthday. I wanted to take time off by myself without anyone else. She thought it was a little strange but warmed up to the idea after I explained the reasoning behind it. We know some friends who have a cabin in Estes Park, Colorado, and they were nice enough to let me stay there for a weekend. I drove up to the cabin with a little bit of food, my laptop, some books, notebooks, and my phone.
The cabin was super nice, and you can see what it looked like in the video above.
Did my work vacation work?
I spent all but an hour or so in the cabin working on my business. I think it was still tough to focus on one thing long enough because I have so many things going on, but I still got a lot accomplished. I was able to:
- Record a lot of educational videos for YouTube.
- Write Blog Posts for the upcoming weeks (especially since I was leaving for Turks and Caicos).
- Make plans and goals for my new real estate office.
- Focus on my current goals for 2018.
- Focus on ways to improve my business.
I got a lot accomplished in a couple of days. I was able to focus on just my work with worrying about all the little things that go on with my family and in the office. I was able to make some big plans for the future, although I still need time to review those plans and implement them! I was able to figure out what I could outsource now to give myself more time for growing the business.
What could I do better in the future with my work vacation?
I was not able to get much reading done, but I feel like I still accomplished a lot. I think I learned how to do this better in the future as well. I had a basic idea of what I wanted to get done on this trip, but I did not set any specific goals (except to record at least 10 YouTube videos). It would also be nice to have a bit more time to work on things. I got to the cabin on a Saturday afternoon, stayed all day Sunday, and left on a Monday morning. I also think I could have focused more on one task than I did. I jumped around a little bit from writing, to shooting videos, to planning, to watching a little bit of Tiger Woods golf. Going up there made me realize how distracted we all are in our day-to-day lives. I was able to remove many of those distractions but not all of them. In the future, I could try going somewhere with no internet and no cell service.