I’ve got a big announcement to make. It may not be all that big to you, but it’s huge to me:
I’m taking a sabbatical from The Retirement Manifesto this summer!
Today, I’ll explain why.
A Sabbatical For The Retirement Manifesto
I’ve been thinking about mixing things up this summer in conjunction with The Great American Road Trip. As you read these words, our home in the North Georgia mountains is 24 hours behind us, and a great big country is starting to roll out in front of us. On Tuesday morning, as this post gets published, I’m likely drinking a cup of coffee by the shores of Lake Guntersville, Alabama.
I suspect I’m smiling.
Last night was the first night of our big trip, we’re officially underway! We’ll be driving to Mississippi today, where we’ll be staying a few nights at Wall Doxey State Park. I don’t know if they have wifi, so don’t be surprised if I don’t respond promptly to the comments.
And that is exactly the point.I'm taking the summer off from writing The Retirement Manifesto, and I wanted you to know why. Click To Tweet
Tip For Those Who Want To Follow Our Trip: I’ve had a lot of readers asking for updates as we travel. While I won’t be writing on a regular basis, I will be providing photo updates as we travel. I’ve included some links at the end of this post for those of you who’d like to follow along.
During this 6,000 RV trip with our 4 dogs:
I DON’T Want to…
- … worry about whether our campground has wifi.
- … feel a sense of obligation to writing a weekly post.
- … stare at a computer screen when I’m in the middle of a beautiful National Park
- … try to hunt down a coffee shop to find time to write.
I DO Want To…
- … make seeing this wonderful country my #1 priority for the next 3 months.
- … disconnect a bit from online life, and give my brain a well-earned break.
- … connect more with my wife, my daughter and our new granddaughter.
- … spend time in nature, whenever and wherever I can.
- … enjoy a morning coffee in a campsite whenever I happen to get out of bed.
- … have a campfire and eat s’mores. Often.
Therefore, I’ve decided I will be taking a sabbatical from blogging for the duration of our trip.
Every week for the past 4 years, I’ve sat at this keyboard and tapped away at whatever was on my mind. Whatever the topic, my brain was seldom in Neutral, always in Drive. I truly love writing and I’ve enjoyed the challenge, but retirement is all about the Freedom to mix things up.
To try new things. To disconnect. To enjoy the scenery.
It’s the right time to be taking a sabbatical.
It’s time to put it in Neutral.
The Evolution Of Retirement
Clearly, I love to write (and I sincerely appreciate all of you who love to read!). However, there are times when other things will be a priority, and I told myself in my Ten Commandments Of Retirement that I’d “Make No Obligations”, and “Stay Flexible To Change”. With that in mind, I’ve decided that taking a sabbatical from The Retirement Manifesto is the right thing to do this summer.
I’m going to be intentional about enjoying every moment of our adventure, and I don’t want this blog to become an obstacle in our quest to take our time, to smell some roses, to see some sights and to truly enjoy this beautiful country we call home.
I Write For The Reader And You Deserve To Know
I debated about publishing this post. Many bloggers simply fade away for a time. Sometimes they return, sometimes not. Was I being vain in publishing a post about taking some time off? Do you really care? I’m not very significant in your lives, and I realize that.
However, I feel a real connection to you and felt it was only right for me to be transparent with my plans. I thought about what I would want if I were in your shoes as a reader of The Retirement Manifesto. I’d wonder why, after 4 years of weekly posts, the airwaves suddenly went quiet.
You deserve better.
So, now you know.
I trust you understand.
This article starts with the word “Why”, and that was intentional. I felt it only fair to give you some insight before I disappeared for a while. I hope you’ll miss me, but I know your lives will go on. As will mine. Smiles.
I plan on returning to the keyboard when we return from the Pacific Northwest at the end of the summer. Until then, you’ll be seeing less of me, and me of you. I’ve got two killer Guest Posts already in the hopper, and can’t wait to share them with you while I’m traveling. I may stop by from time to time and share some thoughts, but I want to fully remove the sense of obligation I sometimes feel for maintaining this blog on a weekly basis.
You can rest assured I’m still out there enjoying retirement and learning lessons which I’ll share with you upon my return (for the record, I have 87 draft posts sitting in WordPress in various stages of completion, so I still have a lot to say).
Thanks again for all your support of my blog, and I look forward to seeing you at the end of what I’m hoping will be a summer I’ll never forget.
To Get Updates During Our Trip:
While I won’t commit to writing any blog posts during The Great American Road Trip, I will likely be active on my other Social Media channels. For those who are interested in more frequent “updates from the road”, I’ve included some links below to the places you can find me while I’m taking a sabbatical. If you’re not yet a subscriber, I encourage you to subscribe to my e-mail here. I may be sharing some direct emails while traveling.
Pick your favorite “channel”, and consider following along on our adventure!
I enjoy Instagram as the “best” site for sharing photos of “our early retirement life”. As we’re traveling, I’ll be using Instagram as the primary spot for sharing the “best” photos from our journey.
I’ll post occasional highlights along with some photos.
I never really understood what Twitter was all about. Then, I tried it.
With 8k followers, you can be sure I’ll continue to Tweet!
- My E-Mail List – I may shoot out some “special” emails to subscribers. I may not. Wink.
For those of you who may have missed my post on the trip, here’s a summary map of our itinerary. If you were in my shoes, wouldn’t you think about taking a sabbatical, too?
Don’t be afraid to live the retirement you choose for yourself. If you feel the calling, consider taking a sabbatical from your “normal” routine. Get outside and see the world. Mix it up a little. Have some fun.
Your Turn: One of the things I love most about blogging is my interaction with you, the reader. I’ll warn you that I’m not going to be as active in replying as I normally am, but I’ll read every one of your comments. What do you think about taking a sabbatical? Have you ever done it? Any thoughts or tips as we begin our adventure?