Yearly Focus

Sabbath Year – After Eleven Months – Preparing for Reentry

With one month until our sabbath year is officially completed, we’ve begun the process of reentering normal life.

I wrote this a year ago as I planned our year:

“We don’t have much clarity as to what our days will look like in this period because we aren’t certain where we will be living, what the details of my work will be, or what we will be preparing for. We do know that around five months into each new child’s life is usually the time we start to feel like we arrive at a new normal – so this should be a great time to get the engine started up again.”

Sitting here now, we have more clarity about what our days look like and what we are preparing for. It is also true that with our youngest at five months old now, we’ve gotten out of newborn fire drill mode & have reached a point of equilibrium. That equilibrium just happens to be very intense.


Over the past six months our family has been wrestling with a few big decisions. I’ve reflected about it a few times (here & here). Having now made those decisions, I am impressed with how effective deadlines are. Had we not been trying to stick to our intended timeline, we might still be undecided now.

But, having a target date in mind gave us something to shoot for. It let us work backwards and understand when it was time to broadly explore, when it was time to narrow down and look at details and then eventually, when it was time to make the final call.


More important than the specific decisions we made is the deeper understanding we’ve gained about what our timelines look like for those. For many reasons, we won’t start day 1 of our next 7 year cycle in the exact place we want to finish it. But having done a lot of thinking about specifically the next 7 years and also more broadly about how many 7 year cycles we might have left – we now have more of a north star for guiding other decisions along the way.

As we think about reentry, the are the short term things we want to get done in the next month, there are mid term things that will follow over the coming months and there are a few bigger items that we will spend a few years progressing towards, as those opportunities become possible.

In that sense, I don’t think it will feel light a light switch flips on the first day after the sabbath year, but I do feel the impact of this year has already and will continue to drive drive meaningful change in the way we live.