My Three Month Sabbatical

I’m calling it a sabbatical. Even though I won’t be travelling – but I will be doing some studying so that counts right?

Sounds fancier than three months unemployed ha!

This was never the plan. I saw myself at the school I was working in until June 2021 and then flying out July 2021 to Taiwan.

But, through several negative situations at school including not being offered a permanent contract due to ‘funding’ (it’s a whole tingg), I decided to leave the school when my three months permanent contract finished.

I thought this could be a great opportunity to have some time off before I moved abroad and began a new job. And boyyyy would I need it, the job I just left, sure, I loved it and it was extremely rewarding, supporting Autistic children, but it sure was challenging. Emotionally and physically draining. I realised I didn’t want to be exhausted come June and then immediately start a new job on the other side of the planet – Yikes!

Knowing myself, I can’t just bum about for three months I would go insane and I would be miserable. A spiralling down mentally and emotionally for three months does not sound like a good build up to the next exciting chapter now does it??

I decided to come up with a three month challenge. This would be a daily schedule of activities that would benefit my body, mind and spirit. But instead of setting a million and one goals and expectations for myself, it’s all with only ONE goal.

To simply, stick to the challenge.

If I successfully stick to this daily schedule, the secondary goals will be fantastic – but as to not get overwhelmed by all the potential outcomes I am avoiding thinking about the individual activities and only focusing on getting the dang job done! Every. Single. Day.

A friend once told me, he was trying to lose weight through regular cycling. But instead of focusing on the body scales number, his goal was to increase the distance he cycled everyday. The goal is still numerical, but it’s distance, which for a lot of people is a much healthier and easier goal to focus on. Body weight can become an obsession and there are too many factors that make that number bob up and down throughout the day which will affect your mood and motivation.

I thought this was a genius and much more sensible goal. So I have taken his idea and adapted it for myself. Show up everyday, do the activities and tick them off – easy right?

My daily activities:

  • Cycling – I have a route that is about 40 minutes in total, it has up hill climbs, hill bombs, rough terrain and roads – nicely mixed!
  • Walking – I walk everywhere anyway so this one is easy. But there are days where I don’t go anywhere so a minimum of 30 minute walking is the plan.
  • Yoga – Keeps my hip from hurting, will ease any stiffness from the other physical activities.
  • Strength Training (2 small sessions) – I use the Freeletics app at home, the sessions are manageable, around 20 minutes.
  • Cold Shower – Wim Hof is seriously on to something with this cold water therapy!
  • Meditation – Positive affirmations in the morning, a midday regroup or a night time wind down – whatever I need!
  • Healthy Eating – Now I am not working I have the time to focus on eating really well and cooking great meals.
  • No Sweets – My absolute weakness. So I am banning cakes, ice cream, chocolate etc.
  • Reading – Already got several books on the go on my Kindle and I can have it with me wherever I am.
  • One Blog Post – Creative writing/journaling/documenting my life – very cathartic for me.
  • Learn Mandarin – Expand the mind! And create a little foundation for when I move to Taiwan!

As you can see my schedule is a mixture of activities that keep me active, positive and my mind engaged. All these are beneficial activities and I hope to form some great habits. It seemed quite daunting at first and I didn’t know if I would have the motivation (not having the time was now NOT a viable excuse!)

But, let’s see how it goes!

Till tomorrow…

Photo by Jared Rice on Unsplash