Friday February 6, 2009
MJ Flanagan - Training Director
With sullen looks and a discussion about our options my husband and I looked at the snowfall on Sunday night and started the recovery plan. In all my years with learnpurple, I have never let a client down or cancelled a course even when it meant I could barely walk after putting my back out.
6.30am Monday morning I was woken by my seven year old whooping for joy and dancing around the house, 'no school today we get to play'. 13.5 inches of snow had fallen in the night and we were in total lock down. No options for mobility.
The calls and emails started at 7am from and to clients rearranging training courses, receiving messages of cancelled meetings and contingency plans made if it were to continue throughout the week. A trip to Coventry was a go ahead to train emotional intelligence and I had to work out my best options for getting there. By lunchtime I had got more work done than if I had been in the office and was still in my jimjams.
My husband, in the meantime, had disappeared to the shed, a few hours later he came back with a beautiful wooden sleigh ready to use along side the plastic one we already owned. 'That's it lunch break' he said, 'get your ski gear on we're going on holiday - to the downs round the corner, get James' friends and lets have some fun.' For the next four hours we snowballed, whooped, jumped, sleighed and had a fantastic time. Every person we met smiled and said hello, even sullen fifteen year olds who would never normally give you the time of day. There is something about unplanned days off that makes them more fun than a regular break and the snow brightens every one and every where up too.
We came home to hot chocolate with brandy (mine not my son's) and homemade meatballs as I had time to cook. Did you know that diets and healthy eating are null and void on sneaky, snowy days? We talked excitedly about the adventures we'd had and what was in store the next day instead of worrying about the challenges we will face with work tomorrow and all slept soundly. More soundly than we had in a long time.
In shades of ground-hog day yesterday morning, I was woken by more whoops of joy as my son informed us school was closed again and the snow had not melted. So while he and his dad put together a plan of action for even more fun, I managed to arrange my trip to Coventry to ensure I was fresh, ready and on time for the course. In fact I arrived so early it gave me time to get lots of work done and have a swim in the hotel spa. I have managed to not let any clients down and have in fact been able to give them more time as I have been less rushed and a lot calmer.
I was later informed that school would be closed today too. I didn't inform my husband straight away as he was still out playing. As a self employed handyman, he may not be earning any money over these snowy days, he is however making memories which are far more valuable.
The snow day really reminded me how important work life balance really is. And how easily we can get sucked into the routines, and stresses from work. Next time it snows rather than think doom and gloom I am going to embrace it in the same way my small son did, whoop for joy, get my work done and make some memories of my own. Life is for living I must remember that, it will make me a better mum, wife, friend, trainer and employee.
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