Epic Summer Redux

All the photos in this post are from last week’s mini vacation in New Buffalo, MI. I thought it would be fun to share a little bit of that adventure here, but it seemed really self-indulgent to write an actual post about it.


 

Two years ago I was having the worst summer of my life: I was experiencing on and off debilitating pain (more on, sadly); I had suddenly left my job, my clients, and presumably my profession; and a close family member turned out to be very ill. Sometimes I thought it was going to crush me.

Walkway to the dunes
Walkway to the dunes

It was also in some ways the best summer of my life: it felt like I had very little left to lose and so I really lived in the moment. When I was in Chicago my besties and I would go to street festival after street festival and dance in the street like we didn’t have a care in the world; in those moments I honestly didn’t.

Little New Buffalo lighthouse behind the dunes
Little New Buffalo lighthouse behind the dunes

I have decided to try to have it all this summer in what I’m calling, “Epic Summer 2: The Return”. At first is seems like a daunting idea; seeing clients (and giving them my all), keeping healthy, blogging and staying up on social media, working on my creative writing, and then finding time to dance with abandon. Kind of the opposite of carefree, right?

A family of geese joined me for morning meditation. Such fluffy goslings!
A family of geese joined me for morning meditation. Such fluffy goslings!

Fortunately, in addition to all the other ways I have been trying to optimize my life, I have been reading a lot on time management/productivity. This article was the inspiration I needed to finally go for it.

We randomly stopped at Central Beach in Indiana to admire the Chi skyline.
We randomly stopped at Central Beach in Indiana to admire the Chi skyline.

 

Here’s my plan for the days I don’t see clients: during the hours when all sensible vampires and people of Irish descent are staying out of the sun as much as possible, I will be doing my computer projects like writing for this blog and my newsletter. During my original Epic Summer I spent these hours either reading about the Founding Fathers/ Revolutionary War if I was in Michigan, or watching t.v. if I was at home. I’ll use timers to help ensure that I’m using that time as productively as possible (I cannot tell you how much of a difference using a timer has made in my life already!). The rest of my time is for playing outside, or reading, or street dancing.

I just really liked this bush.
I just really liked this bush.

The days when I do see clients will stay the same. When I am at work, my time is theirs and I give them my all.

I have no idea if this plan will actually succeed. My hope is that by bringing back little pieces of that carefree summer, I’ll have even more to give during my working hours. The beauty of being self-employed is the freedom to play with things like this. The danger is not re-calibrating in time if it doesn’t work. Luckily for me, I’m an optimist.

This was the view from our balcony. I could never get tired of waking up to that!
This was the view from our balcony. I could never get tired of waking up to that!

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