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Have you ever eaten something and as you savor the deliciousness you ask yourself, “Why am I just now tasting this!? Where has this been my whole life?” That is how I feel about this week.

My schedule is very full—it has to be because of the demands of my day job. But too often, the demands of my day job get in the way of me actually doing my job. Maybe you know how I feel. I get behind with the requests of others and I miss the goals I have for myself.

A few months ago I told my assistant that I needed a vacation from meetings just to get caught up. She said, “Let’s do it!” So we picked a day in the future (it was probably 60 days or more into the future) and we cancelled everything that week. It was far enough in the future that it didn’t freak me out; I knew it was coming and could prepare for it.

This is what I called “A vacation from meetings.” I had no idea how great it would be until I did it. While I had taken a vacation from meetings before for key projects (or because everyone else was gone), I had never done it so far in advance without knowing how I would use it. Knowing that it was coming and could be used for anything was refreshing.

Here is why I loved it:

  • It gave me a break from the routine of life. I need change—it energizes me. A week that was totally different, even where I sat, what I ate, where I worked, was all very refreshing to me.
  • It allowed me to work on my personal system. I did a lot of work on my email and task management this week. I did a video training on Omnifocus, read a book on email management, and just refined my systems.
  • I got ahead on my sermons. This is golden in my world! I was so sick of being behind; it affects others in my life and even my outlook on life and my preaching. It is good to be ahead. I feel like I can breathe.
  • I got ready to launch a new ministry siteI will write more about this later, but I am working to release what I call “Passive Ministry” sites (ministries that don’t need my ongoing attention). We are almost ready for this cool product.
  • I wrote and recorded two podcastsGetting ahead here is also golden.
  • Three new videos were recorded for my blog. I am trying to do more of these for easier consumption. That felt good – even though I hate watching myself on video.
  • Many other little pesky tasks found their death this week because I was able to work without having to run to a meeting.

So maybe it is your time to take a vacation from meetings. I bet the people you lead or work with would be grateful to have the break anyway, so go for it. I think you’ll be amazed at what you can get done. Here is a text one of my friends and co-workers sent me last night that made me laugh:

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A vacation from meetings will be a quarterly or bi-monthly thing for me now. I can’t wait for the next one!

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