Routines 

The longest day of the year is often the point where summer starts for many of us who live in the Western Hemisphere. As part of my summer routine, I pack my rucksack, and head on over to Stinson Beach, which is an hour and a half away from my San Francisco apartment. It just might be a world away – for it is easy to let the warm sand, the sound of lapping waves, brisk breezes and big sunsets lull you into thinking that you are in a beach resort further south. The fog on the horizon or late at night is always around to remind you that we are still in Northern California.

The annual pilgrimage to this beach community is part of the an offsite for our venture capital partnership. It is a ritual that helps us remember our core values and reset as a team to regroup for what comes next. It is a chance to reconnect and refocus as a group. But mostly it is a chance to share what we have learned. The work we do as a group also includes a chance to explore a fantastic area, full of wonderful photo taking opportunities. 

One of the things I love about the annual visit is that I can see a perceptible drop in my blood pressure and feel the tensions of my daily life melt away. I assume it is from letting go of daily routines and rigor that comes with the routine. While at Stinson Beach this year, I found myself often sitting outside on the porch, late at night reading Skywalking, a wonderful story told by a commercial pilot. Early mornings sitting on a cold beach, I often wondered about time, it’s manifestation and how our understanding of time has changed with increased mechanization and automation of our world. I walked up and down an empty road, wondering about the idea of transportation.

The idle thinking is what eventually leads to something new — a new blog post perhaps? I don’t know — but I do know, I have started to dislike routines. They are a reminder of a rigidity that is imposed by age and expectations. They are a reminder that most of our life is unlived. Routines are good to some extent, but when they cause you to be rigid, they can be bad! I am glad I took this week to center myself and find myself looking into the summer hopeful, and ready for whatever comes next!

Stinson Beach, June 26, 2015