Happy 2019! Our big decision in 2018 to relocate to Miami was all about family. Grace (Noah’s sister) & her husband Jason gave us a great Christmas gift by flying cross country so we could all be together. This meant that we were able to invite them to join us on our weekly business meeting/beach walk!
We typically start the walk reaffirming our mission, talking about how we can be of service and what core values we want The Clements Firm to have. We usually plan a topic to talk about on our walks, and we originally had the topic of flexibility picked out. We have implemented time blocking as a way to work smart and for the first few months it really helped to balance the tasks of business, client engagement and client meetings.
As our business is evolving there are more client meetings which require setting specific times, the winter holiday events were all happening at set times, plus the family commitments increased as our college kids returned home – the combination of these three left us with the question of “when do we hold firm to the time blocking and when do we allow a more flexible schedule?” I wanted to make sure we were not being too rigid, that we were allowing for unplanned opportunities but at the same time having enough of a schedule that work was still happening.
As the four of us began to talk about how we manage our time with work and how we see the ideal balance, some insights arose and sharing became a better topic. Grace began sharing childhood stories and talked about how those experiences have shaped how she looks at scheduling. Jason shared how he was raised and talked about the rituals and routines that he grew up with and the ones he practices on a day to day basis. I am definitely a planner and like to stick a set schedule. Noah operates with more of a now-or-never philosophy. Jason and I are alike in that we tend toward daily habits and predictable behaviors. Noah and Grace are much more of the spontaneous- let’s-grab-this-opportunity variety. It can’t be a mistake or coincidence that we ended up with partners who are so different. Subconsciously each of us had gone looking for a partner who had the opposite tendency to sort of balance us out.
Our conversation shifted from talking about our roles within our work day or work week into the roles we have in our family. Our family roles have shifted now that so many loved ones have passed, including parents and Noah and Grace’s brother. We are each coming at this with different views and what might be right for one of us may not be the best for another. We began talking about the different family traditions and family trips and how the scheduling there has shifted now that our roles have shifted. Where do we hold on to the traditions and where do we explore new ways of doing things? How do we see our position within the family and where do we see that changing?
How interesting that a conversation on how we want to be in our work day transpired to a discussion of who do we want to be in our family. Sharing thoughts and feelings of what our behaviors in the past have been and exploring what we can envision for the future. What a beautiful conversation to have while walking on the beach, it certainly has given me a lot to think about, thanks Grace and Jason!