This is in the top three questions asked by colleagues after:
- When is your year off?
- What are you doing?
Yesterday I had a conversation with a colleague on the same level as me. She asked questions numbers 1 through to 3, with the large part of the discussion at number 3.
We are roughly the same age. I asked her how long she’s “staying”. She said, “If next year’s like this one, two years. If it isn’t then around 5.”
Ah, there’s the rub. I need this year off. It’s not like my post uni gap year. That was adventure and finding independence. This gap year is about restoring.
Restoring my mind.
Restoring my spirit.
Restoring my purpose.
To not always be thinking about work: problems and solutions. To not spend 8 to 9 hours at work, with minimal break times or working while eating, and come home to answer emails and think about more work issues. To not be too exhausted to do much else. To look forward to the weekend for some rest.
Last night I had a nightmare. About a lovely staff member who was so affected by work that after 15 years of service, she quit. Burnt out, exhausted and mentally ill. A loved and lovely teacher. An amazing teacher who got great results. A beautiful person. I tear up thinking about her.
So how long do I have after I come back?
It depends on a lot of things. Cost of renovations that will come the year after our year off. How much the job shits me. My health.
Roughly, I think it will be 5 to 7 years.