For years I pretty much lived out of a suitcase, spending time in Chicago, Los Angeles, Palm Springs, and New York. I was a proud laptop-toting entrepreneur who could work from anywhere. My own version of a digital nomad.
Then, I moved into an apartment I loved and buckled down to try to grow my business. One year turned into twenty months that I hadn’t left the state. My friends and family were confused.
It took a big event to make me finally book a plane ticket – my 35th college reunion. (Can I really be that old?) I wasn’t going to miss that for anything.
And, if I was going to make the effort to leave my very comfortable house, I was going to stay in New York for few days following to catch up with former clients and friends, since I can work from anywhere.
In truth, while I was gone I did as little work as possible – just the bare minimum required to keep things going.
Now that I’m back home, I am feeling disoriented. My reintegration into my own life is not going smoothly at all.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m doing my work, talking to clients, and sending emails, but it’s a really slow slog. I am not finding my rhythm.
Instead, I find myself thinking of these song lyrics:
I’m just wondering why I feel so all alone
Why I’m a stranger in my own life
~ Sheryl Crow
I think a lot of entrepreneurs experience this when we have unplugged from our business for a while. Stepping away from the treadmill makes us realize that we have been, in fact, on a treadmill.
Laugh at the Wobble
Like stepping back on dry land after being on a boat, you may be a little wobbly at first as you try to get back to work. It can be helpful to have some amusement with the process and not take it too seriously.
Getting serious could lead to beating yourself up, which is never helpful.
Remember Your Why
It can be helpful to tap into your why if you need to ground yourself. Why do you do what you do?
Get on Schedule
Some entrepreneurs really chafe at the idea of keeping to a schedule. Isn’t that why you left corporate in the first place? You wanted to chart your own path and do things your way!
However, if you need to get your groove back, creating a fixed schedule and booking tasks on your calendar may be exactly what you should do.
Remember to Exercise
You may find that you feel a little stressed and anxious during a period of reintegration. Taking walks and doing aerobic exercise can really help to get the nervous energy out of your system, which may help you see things more clearly.
Entrepreneurs are impatient by nature. We like to be in control and have things happen on our timeline. However, your disorientation and reintegration process may take a while. Be patient with yourself.
Over time, you will get back in the groove or back to the grind. Like everything else in life, this is a process.
However, if you feel like it’s more than a temporary thing, you might want to read “Feeling Stuck? Try Asking These 5 Questions to Move Forward.”