Giving yourself time to catch up with yourself
I’m sitting in the wonderfully wireless airport in Pittsburg on my way back home after being invited as a guest for a really good conference on lawyer marketing that I’ll tell you more about some other time. Or is this the local shopping mall – if you’ve ever flown through Pittsburg you know what I mean.
I was reading Seth Godin’s latest book Small Is The New Big, which I’ll also comment about when I’m through. I mistakenly put the book into the outside pocket of my rolling luggage instead of my computer case when I boarded the last plane – it was a little puddle hopper prop job where the pilot makes the inflight announcements over her shoulder and they put your rolling luggage in the back of the plane. Which was just as well because we ended up flying through the remnants of Hurricane Ernesto which I left Miami a day early to escape and not miss the conference. So I wouldn’t have been able to read anything anyway in that paint-mixer they call an airplane.
Point is, I just spent the past hour sitting and doing ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. I was completely disconnected from the world. No phone or internet. Nothing to read. We were in clouds the whole time so I couldn’t watch anything but white through the windows & besides the fact that I was one of only two passengers (I was the one randomly selected for the pat-down) the flight was LOUD. So there I was with nothing to do, even more cut-off from my world than my former favorite place to think: the shower.
I thought about all the normal stuff – are we going to crash; How easily the airlines could solve their financial problems by simply giving travellers a better experience with a little more leg-room, doubling ticket prices to justify the reduced capacity and rake-in the profits with fewer but happier passengers whom it would cost less to serve with significantly higher margins; Why didn’t I wake up in-time to get breakfast, how much I miss my bottle of hand sanitizer sitting here in this germ farm they call a seat (note to self – sanitize this laptop keyboard when you get home) and all that kind of stuff. But I also spent time catching up with myself. . .
From the moment we wake up-to the moment we go back to sleep, we’re running. Always with something we could or should be doing. Always bombarded by messages from the radio, television, internet, books, magazines & other people. Never really stopping to just catch-up and reflect on about what we’ve experienced recently and how it fits into the rest of our personal and professional lives.
Too many lawyers have it all screwed-up and put their personal lives into the service of their professional lives. It’s so easy & so rewarding both personally and professionally when you learn how to establish a more appropriate relationship with your Mule – more on that later too.
I don’t know if there’s any way to replicate the experience of being stuck on an empty loud airplane surrounded by nothing but white and cut off from everything. The shower and scuba diving are the closest I’ve found. Suggestions are welcome and encouraged.