Last year my publisher invited me and his other authors to a writers’ retreat in Los Angeles. The chance to hang out with this particular group of writers was pretty exciting, plus I had lived in LA for 10 years and was looking forward to being back in the “hood”.
But, despite that excitement and anticipation, as the date drew nearer I started to talk myself out of making the trip.
Although writing is important to me, it was a “time and money” thing. Money was tight and I wasn’t sure I could justify the expense.
Besides, I told myself, my business needed me. I had things to do, clients to see, deals to sign. We had just launched our VideoCrisps packages and we were feeling very much like a start up again. Everyone was working long hours and eventually I convinced myself that I just couldn’t leave, and in doing so I decided to stay put.
The people in my writers’ community who did go on the retreat had an incredible time, made lifelong memories and friendships and they even got some writing done while they were there.
I worked every day too, but I can’t tell you exactly what I did or even what I accomplished. I’d like to think that by staying back and not going on the trip that I made a significant difference in the business, but I honestly don’t know if that’s true. Chances are pretty high that everything and everyone would have survived if I had gone away for the week.
I was disappointed that I hadn’t just said, “To hell with it,” and had taken off to LA. And I made a big decision. In 2018, no matter where in the world the retreat was going to be held I was going, no matter what.
I sacrifice a lot for my business, but I refuse to give up travel and life experiences for “someday” when the business is more lucrative, stable – or even sold.
We all know that the perfect scenario may never show up, or when it does we may not be fit for traveling. Life can be ironic like that, so I no longer believe in waiting.
And so I decided. For real this time. And this time everything is different because I’ve made it non-negotiable. It’s happening. And while the trip isn’t until October, I’m already getting ready.
I changed my screensaver and desktop pics to beautiful Bali temples and beaches, so that every time I open my computer I get excited about the trip. I’m also beginning to accumulate just the right clothing and shoes. I researched the best way to get to JFK and decided to add an extra day in New York City on either end of the trip. My daughter will be there in October, so seeing her will be an extra bonus before and after the marathon 26-hour flight.
I’m not 100% sure about all the details of “how” this whole trip is going to happen, but I have confidence that it will, one way or another.
As far as the business goes, I’ve been thinking about hiring an assistant for a long time but now that I’ll be gone almost two weeks, I have a real deadline. I need to get someone hired and trained well before my trip. Having that assistant in place is going to help in a multitude of ways beyond just allowing me to go on this trip, and it’s something I’ve been talking about for a long time, but now suddenly having this deadline means that it’s going to happen.
The simple act of making the decision to go has made all the difference. It feels completely different this time.
So, let me ask you if there is a decision you can make in your business or life, a non-negotiable, impactful one. Something big. Important.
If there is, why not commit to deciding and sticking to it, no matter what. Great achievements and adventures both start with simply deciding to ‘go for it’ instead of playing it safe, and you just may just be surprised at what starts to show up when you come at life this way.
Elin Barton is the President of White Knight Productions and the host of the podcast, Ready, Set, Grit. Her first book, Ready, Set, Grit: Three Easy Steps to Finding Your Purpose and Igniting Your Life will be released in 2018. To find out more about how you can use video as a smart tool to grow your business visit our website.