Six months in

Okay, maybe a little more than six months, because I’ve been staring at a blank page for the last few weeks, trying to decant everything that has happened since January 1, since declaring my sabbatical year.

The short version is that I’m exactly where I want to be. I finished my final client project (albeit much later than I’d hoped) and have successfully said “no” to new project requests (harder than it sounds). I helped organize the largest WordPress event to date, also deemed “the most important” by some, and realized my dream by bringing WordCamp Europe to France in 2017. I’ve gotten a good look at how the skills and experiences I’ve built up over my years as a freelancer play out in a large team dynamic, and I like what I see. I’ve completed my first year of yoga teacher training and feel the positive impact that my personal practice has on my daily life. I’ve accompanied my husband as he completes his first novel, working with him through the process of self-publishing. My newsletter experiment has been met with words of gratitude and encouragement, and a steadily growing readership.

Six months into my sabbatical year, and two years into my 3-year plan, nothing is what I expected and everything is going according to plan.

A lot of people, when inquiring about my sabbatical year, have mused at how busy I’ve been. “You sure are working a lot for someone who’s taking time off.” And I’ve mused back that maybe “sabbatical” was never the right word. The plan was never to stop all activity. It was never to sit idle on a beach somewhere or to travel the world aimlessly or to dig in my garden while memorizing the Latin names of various plant species. Yes, rest was part of the plan, and I’ve been getting plenty of rest, despite outward appearances and event sprints. The main goal was always: rupture. To rupture with the professional life I was leading and with the way it was negatively impacting my life in general. To rupture with old routines and habits and processes in order to learn new ones. To rupture with old patterns that held me in an eternal loop, so that I could hit reset, reprogram and then restart.

In the calm of post-event and post-launch bliss, at this milestone in my journey, I am right where I want to be. The most exciting thing right now is watching what was a 3-year plan, turn into a new plan. I see the next 5-6 years laid out before me. I am exactly where I want and need to be, and, quite possibly for the first time, I know exactly where I’m going.

Jenny Beaumont

Jenny Beaumont is a multicultural, multidisciplinary maker and writer of things. She works as a Sr. Project Manager at Human Made, organizes WordCamp Europe & WordCamp Paris, speaks at conferences in France and abroad, and contributes to a number of blogs.

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