It was long over due but I finally did it. I ran away and I highly recommend it.
I needed to get out of the house and studio, which are one and the same in fact. When you work out of your home, the positives can also be negatives, such as having almost everything in your life that requires your attention all within the same square footage. I have known deep down that I needed to “run away”, so I could dial in my focus on my business. There are so many options for group business retreats out there ran by some amazing people. But, I decided to have a retreat of my own.
First, I made a reservation at the Carl-Sweeney Cottage in Leiper’s Fork, TN. I had discovered this special gem on instagram many moons ago and was excited to see it in person. Some of you have met Michelle (pictured below). She has been a constant friend and helper for several years now. She is a great Ethel to my Lucy brained approach to things. She has a calm and creative soul and a lot of patience, so next I invited her to join me.
Then I packed up my dozen or so notebooks in a giant basket along with my laptop and post it notes and carried them all with me. (I’m a fan of pen, paper, and lots of list making.) Once we spread it all out, it was like my brain was all right there on the long dining room table. I found it incredibly helpful to be able to see the bigger picture this way. Michelle, ever the good sport, listened to me as I read aloud blogs I had written but not posted yet and wanted her feedback on. I’ll be sharing more of those soon. We also were sure to make some time to visit the antique shops, boutiques, and restaurants there in Leiper’s Fork.
I went prepared with a list of the topics to discuss, plan or revisit. In case you may want to do this for yourself or are just curious, here’s a loose itinerary:
1. Review 2022 – Numbers, feedback, calendars/events. Notice patterns and opportunities to improve.
2. Plan 2023 – Month by month. Compare to 2022 and note changes. Then, incorporate new ideas and the time needed to prepare and implement them.
3. Compile a prioritized and scheduled to-do list.
I returned home with an organized list of things to come and I’m excited to share them with you throughout this year! What you are reading now was task number one, sharing a recap of the first unofficial “Amy Crews Art Retreat” and some beautiful photos of the special place visited.
For my next retreat, I’d like to spend a solitary week somewhere scenic and peaceful where I can paint and tackle some online courses I have been putting on the back burner for far too long. If you have any suggestions of where I should stay, please send them my way or let me know in the comments below!
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