> I have no ideas when I consider what I can possibly do to keep my relationship going well, be fair, and still have a fulfilling career. Any experiences to share that might help? Any advice for me?Commiseration, mostly, I guess.
At one point some years ago, I got a job in Milwaukee. We'd have moved (glad we didn't), but there was talk of moving the group to San Diego, so I held off.
The original plan had been to fly home every weekend, which was at least feasible between Milwaukee and Ann Arbor, but it was grueling. I'd get nothing done at my apartment and still be flying around on Sunday afternoon etc. So visits home would get fewer. I'd take three-day weekends and stuff. Ricia would come up there. But it was hard.
It was no fun, but I don't recall it as having been threatening to our relationship. I suppose there had been much more threatening things in the past ...
Then I got the XP gig and was home for the four years that went on. Much better, though I hated the 90 minute drive to work and back. But hey, we were inventing XP!
Then it came time to go more independent. I knew I didn't want to be away for long times, so I have always set up coaching gigs to be one week, at most two weeks, even when doing things for large companies where you could in principle go from group to group week after week. If it was near by, I'd do single week, then back in a couple of weeks. Out in Seattle, say, I might do two weeks in a row. I don't think I've ever done three in a row.
International trips are harder, because it's harder to make up for the travel time and money. However, Chet and I were in Holland a couple of weeks ago. We had had a course set up in Sweden the week after, which fell through. Frankly we were glad to be going home. A week on stage is a long time.
You're probably more gentle than I am. No one can take more than a week of me anyway. So it works best that way.
Now I have some advantages, maybe. I'm famous in this tiny fishpond, so it is credible that I wouldn't spend weeks with anyone anyway. And I have simple tastes (BMWs, no Ferraris) so I can live on a week or two of work a month. And now, we're mostly teaching courses and such, which have a nice beginning and end sort of thing going.
But there's no reason you couldn't move more and more to doing your world-famous Lanette Creamer Here's How The Hell You Really Do This course, fly in, do it, fly out.
Courses are not an easy answer, though. It's hard to get the word out, hard to get a public one to work. Our experience is that if someone local sets it up, it can work. We have had almost uniformly bad experience with setting up public courses on our own. Of course, our idea of marketing is to post some tweets and wait for the phone to ring. It has worked for us but there's that fish/pond thing again.
People have mentioned joining some company. Even then you may be sent all over, and my experience is that some companies wind up sending you just anywhere to do anything someone will pay for. That's not my preferred way to live. YMMV.
The situation may stress you, Craig, the relationship, all kinds of things. In the end, you have to find your own way, and I am quite sure that you will.
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