So I went into the basement for two weeks. A sort of shutdown for awhile. Despite many attempts to drag me back to the surface, I was able to for the most part stay tucked away in the basement. I suppose I have some great people on my team at work to thank for that no doubt! Anyway, going into the basement for a while I think is a much needed and very helpful thing to do.
Sometimes when you are thinking about a few particular things constantly, you get sort of mesmerized and lulled into a certain way of thinking. It is very difficult, perhaps impossible, to break yourself away from that thinking until you officially remove yourself away from it for a while. You will know when you have officially gone to the basement, when you sit back and try to remember what it was that you were so worried about a few weeks ago. When you have taken enough time off that you cannot remember, then you have officially got to the basement.
Now, going to the basement has some disadvantages. You will come crawling out, unshaven, out of sorts, bleary eyed and have gained a few pounds. You will also feel a little out of place with everything, and probably have a mountain of work to catch up on. However, you will have new perspective. I always make sure that after a basement trip, I spend the first morning back contemplating my goals, setting priorities and considering what is the most important to me. This way the basement time is really worth it, provides me with a solid foundation on which to attack the problems at hand. Any problems that are still around after you have gone to the basement, then those are actually real problems after all!