Happy 2018! Around the holidays, we made a decision to practice what we promote and take a break. No new blog content and very limited social media posting gave us time to be present and playful during family celebrations, reflect on 2017, and reconnect with why we do the work we do. Taking a break challenged me at first because I enjoy reading, writing, and creating content, but it distracted me during family events. After a few days, I eventually turned that creative energy toward our holiday festivities.
We then took the first week of the new year to focus on goals and strategy for 2018. During one of our strategic planning meetings, we came up with a clearer way to explain why we use juggling and skill toys in our programs: to build connections through mindful play and learning. Stronger connections with self through awareness and reflection, stronger connections with colleagues through shared struggle and success, and stronger connections to abstract ideas through experiential learning exercises. Explaining what we do has been challenging for us in the past (and we haven't always been on the same page), but this time it flowed easily. I believe that's largely because we scheduled the planning retreat immediately following our break and came to it fresh.
Where I always struggle is shifting back into the rhythm after a lull. I'm a few weeks into 2018 and just posting to the blog for the first time. And I almost put it off another day, but realized I just needed to start writing - rusty or not. My one takeaway from the experience: take the break (it has been valuable), but anticipate that the transition back may not be easy. Next time, I will set writing as the first thing I do after a break so I don't keep putting it off and let busy work get in the way. Always testing and learning from what works and what doesn't.
What helps you transition back after a break?