101: Taking a Sabbatical, with Sean McCabe


Looking forward to this one. I am really interested in taking a sabbatical and bummed Sean is not updating his sabbatical.blog. I realize 2020 has been tough on traveling but am interested in an update.

He’s kind of updating it… in the episode you’ll hear why :wink: basically he has a rule where he can’t commit to anything ahead of time. Made scheduling this one a little interesting!

Thanks. Planning on listening tomorrow. I guess I was expecting more frequent updates since this year was supposed to be the basis for his book. Last update was April 13th.

This was a very fun episode to listen to. Hearing @mikeschmitz and Sean talk David into scheduling a sabbatical in real time was great.

I really want to implore David to tell his clients beforehand that he’ll be inaccessible during his sabbatical week. That’s going to go over a lot better than if he has a client come to him with an “emergency” during that week and being surprised when David tells them he won’t get to the their urgent issue until the following week.

I think that the vast majority of his clients will understand, especially if David lets them know in advance. While there might be a few that aren’t understanding, one of the benefits of being a Free Agent is that you can choose who you decide to work for. David has already talked about how he’s selective about who he chooses to take on or continue as a client. Maybe going forward one of the criteria he uses to make those decisions needs to be “client is understanding about sabbaticals”.

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Great episode fellas. Echoing @ChrisUpchurch it was awesome listening to Mike and Sean goad David into the sabbatical. David, thanks for willing to experiment.

Like Chris said, inform your clients in advance. You might be surprised. Last year when I told my clients I would be away for a 2 week road trip every single response I received was a variation on: “that’s awesome, can’t wait to hear about it when you get back”.


Wow I really enjoyed this episode and agree with @ChrisUpchurch’s encouragement for letting David’s clients know he will be “away” weeks in advance.

I’m planning to make the “blind step” forward and wanted to go ahead and look at when the best 7-week cycles might be over a calendar year. I’m a university professor so largely tied to a school schedule, so there are times of the year that being gone for a week just doesn’t make sense, and similarly I wouldn’t want it to fall over Christmas week when I’m obviously away anyway. :white_check_mark: Does anyone have any thoughts on how the 7-week sabbatical maps out over the year and pros/cons for placement of that initial iteration?

Similarly, I’m wondering if there are thoughts on the difference between a sabbatical and a vacation. My family takes a fair amount of time in the summer to travel once with each side of the family, as well as just ourselves to Disney World. WDW obviously has plans, but the others are fairly leisurely, but I’m still not in charge of my day because I’m watching my 7 & 2 yo with my wife (which as @mikeschmitz alluded to is fulfilling for sure, but also exhausting). When you’re gone for vacation, I feel like it would be difficult to return home, and then take a week-long sabbatical. Curious if anyone has thoughts for how these two areas could co-exist on a 52-week calendar.

Thanks for another great episode guys. Really enjoyed it!