The real (and often unspoken) value of Headspace for accountants
Headspace is a word that is bandied around a bit at the moment don’t you think? What is it? Does it work? Or, is it just some more mumbo jumbo? And is headspace for accountants?
When you are busy with work, career and life in general the idea of headspace seems unattainable and even impossible. Why do we even need headspace? Over the summer I had the chance to really experience high quality headspace. This blog post sums up my experiences of headspace but also the business reason for you to get regular high quality headspace if you want to grow your practice. And yes, with some focus, it is possible for accountants to get headspace in the midst of their busy season!
What is headspace for accountants?
The whole idea of headspace is to actually get you thinking about things around you rather than the day to day mundane things that take up every waking hour. This could be thinking about a problem in your life or relationships. A task that you are struggling with or even a problem in your career. With all the day to day distractions you never get the time to fully explore what is right under your nose and your head is just a muddle of everything going on.
Most people have some ‘downtime’ to get thinking about the bigger picture, but do they really use it for thinking, or just fill up the ‘space’ with even more to worry about such as LinkedIn requests, Twitter feeds or feeding the kids? I have a daily routine where I walk (I try to do 10,000 steps per day) and I use this time to think and contemplate. This allows me to keep a clear head, a positive attitude and some clarity in my life. But sometimes an hour a day isn’t quite enough and we need to do something radical.
My experience of generating headspace time over this summer
I had recently taken some time off from my career in order to get some serious headspace and truly find where I wanted to be, with not only my career, but also my life, marriage and other relationships that I am involved in with my personal and musical life.
The first thing that I did with my ‘Headspace time’ was to refurbish my bathroom. This gave me nothing else to worry about except the job in hand and this whole project allowed me time to forget about my previous role, and to totally clear my mind to enable me to plan for what I really wanted to do.
I had many interesting conversations with differing employers, but the time I had set aside for thinking really gave me the capacity to fully understand what I wanted and rather than jump into a role that paid well, I was armed with a goal of specific requirements that I needed for the next chapter of my career.
I was searching for a role that would permit me to work in way that would mean that I could carry on with my voluntary work with Guide Dogs ( we have a new puppy every year to train and a prerequisite is that we are at home with the little fella).
Before my ‘Headspace Time’ I hadn’t really focussed on what we wanted as a family and was seeking roles that didn’t quite fit. With my time off I was able to ‘see the light’ and we have changed our whole outlook on life. As well as an exciting new role we have made some other monumental decisions in our life which has given us renewed vigour and some serious goals to attain.
If you are running a big project or trying to grow your accountancy business how much time do you actually have for yourself? With a bit of time taken out of your busy day to truly reflect and think outside the box you’ll have the space to answer your questions, or even find some bigger questions that could be at the core of your plans. I’ve spoken to friends who are in roles that they do not like, but are too busy with the role to actually think what they want next. By freeing up some time they will be able to see the bigger picture and really make the positive changes they need. That’s why all our club members have the opportunity to come on a group coaching and accountability call every fortnight. It’s their time to get some high quality thinking time away from the day-to-day melee which is running an accountancy practice. See here for more about the benefits of joining the club.
If you want to find some time to think, walking is a great way to really reflect, but even the mundane things such as washing the dishes or cutting the lawn can give you time to think, you just need to open your mind and drift away rather than bottling up all the ongoing issues.
Maybe it’s a bit radical to take a month or two off, (however tempting this may sound right now) but it worked for me and when you really have time to think, you get to consider all possibilities and get things down on paper to enable you to plan. So the next time you are doing the washing up, let yourself see this as a time for you to have some headspace and reflect on where you are.