Why I will be taking 6 three-day retreats this year

Today will be the last of 6 days in The Barrow Bunker over the Christmas and New Year period – time invested in working ON my business.

I began with an Xmas project list of 29 tasks (which grew to 34), ranging from quick fixes around the office and home to the development of a new e-book on marketing, re-establishing my sales pipeline monitoring software and the completion of some online courses and reading material.

Most important of all, time to think in peace and solitude – about the things I want to keep on doing, the things I don’t want to do any more and the new things I want to learn or introduce.

The holiday period has been fortunate in allowing me to double-dip on Bunker Time but the habit of booking a regular retreat with myself is one which is locked into the calendar for the rest of 2017.

There will be 3-day retreats commencing 2nd April, 2nd July and 8th October (quarterly) and, in addition, my annual retreat (still 3 days) will commence on 14th August (that’s when I will plan in the post-January dates for 2018).

I already know that my next Xmas retreat will commence on 27th December 2017 and will run over into my first retreat of the following year on 2nd January 2018.

You can see how much importance I place on this – because once the year of working IN your business starts, the calendar races away and, before we know it, we are hurtling through the year “doing it, doing it, doing it” (as Mr. Gerber would say) with no time to reflect, learn, make course corrections and future-proof ourselves.

A benefit of having these retreats in place is that you can create a file/folder/shelf/drawer/tray in which the odd jobs and bigger projects can be parked without you feeling guilty – leaving you to focus on what matters most on your focused delivery days.

I’m back on the road tomorrow, facilitating a full day workshop and I’m looking forward to it in the knowledge that I know exactly where I want to go in 2017, how to get there, with whom.

I can see those future retreats ahead of me – safe harbours in which to repair, rest and resupply the good ship.


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Chris Barrow

Chris Barrow has been active as a consultant, trainer and coach to the UK dental profession for over 20 years. As a writer, his blog enjoys a strong following and he is a regular contributor to the dental press. Naturally direct, assertive and determined, he has the ability to reach conclusions quickly, as well as the sharp reflexes and lightness of touch to innovate, change tack and push boundaries. In 2014 he appeared as a “castaway” in the first season of the popular reality TV show “The Island with Bear Grylls”. His main professional focus is as Coach Barrow, providing coaching and mentorship to independent dentistry.