I know anyone living paycheck to paycheck can’t possibly contemplate this, but I’ve always wondered, given a year off work, what I’d do with it. Besides day drink and roam about town in ripped shorts and children’s sunglasses. I have a small face….leave me alone.
For instance, I have a buddy right now who got himself a sprinter van and is touring around national parks doing trail running. Now he’s divorced and returns home every other week to be a father to his children (meaning it’s not unlimited freedom), but perhaps that anchor helps make the weeks on the road more special and less ultimately redundant. He’s going to sleep in the van, get in shape and then revisit next steps in 6 months. He’s also going to run in a 100 mile race in October. If he doesn’t get bear mauled.
I have another friend who is about to go spend 2 months in Australia and New Zealand. He and his wife don’t have kids, so they can just up and go. In fairness they do have cats, but I think you can just leave out a huge bowl of cat food. Seriously….cats suck.
My brain goes to the contemplation of using the time to ‘go deep’ in a number of areas, perhaps 1 month at a time. What would it be like to spend a month doing yoga and meditation, learning an adventure sport like kite surfing, or even working in manual labor? Which concentrated activity (if any) would provide the most reward, the most happiness, or the most catharsis or self realization/actualization? Maybe just spending a month at a resort getting massages? Maybe volunteering? Or maybe just day drinking and small sunglass wearing.
Note – I am not in any way suggesting that young child has been day drinking. He’s on meth.
Is a month long enough to extract deep value from an experience? They say habits are formed in 21 days. Who is ‘they’? Your mom. Seriously, she might have said that. But I think also some experts. So if you spent a month trying to be a great father or husband, is it rewarding, or just a pain in the rump? If you spent a month spending time in the great outdoors, would you feel closer to nature and the universe, or just have Zika?
And finally, is it what you do with the time, or just the fact that you lack a work obligation? Would trying to ‘do something’ (or grow in some way) simply replace a sense of responsibility from work with another obligation?