Meet Plan Go 2011: Have You Had Your Career Break Today?

Lost Girls Events and Tour, Planning, Traveling Solo & Together — By on October 12, 2011 at 12:42 pm

Meet Plan Go 2011It was back in 2007, just as our round-the-world adventure was coming to a close, that Jen, Holly and I first heard the term “Career Break.” A producer from CNN emailed us when we were in Sydney and mentioned that she was planning a show on the new trend of Americans taking Career Breaks. Since we were currently on one, could her team come to Australia and follow us around with a camera in order to document our experiences?

We were totally unconvinced, not just because we assumed that one of our friends had to be playing a practical joke on us  (I mean, what CNN—really?) but mostly because we’d never actually heard the term “Career Break” before. We became so sure, in fact, that it someone was pulling our leg that we actually called the main number for CNN in Atlanta (on the a then-nascent program called Skype) and asked to be connected to this supposed producer with the made-up show topic.

To our shock, call went through.

Fast forward to today, four years later, and we now know that A. The email was not a joke (you can watch the clip we filmed here under “Gap Year”) and B. Career Breaks are definite not just a trend or a passing fad. Thanks in varying degrees to proliferation of travel blogs, the viral nature of social media —and the incredible efforts of one grassroots organization called Meet Plan Go—career breaks are becoming an essential, non-negotiable and increasingly acceptable part of the American work experience.

It wasn’t until we returned to the US that we met the fabulous Michael Potter and Sherry Ott, who founded Meet Plan Go, and learned that there were literally thousands of other people out there who had taken their career breaks—and countless others who or dreamed of doing so. These were real people like all of you and me, from recent grads to mid-career professionals to workers nearing the end of their professional tenures, and virtually everyone was attempting to live out their travel dreams it on a real-world budget.

Next week, on October 18th, Sabbatical Veterans and Future Career Breakers will be getting together in 17 cities across the country the largest-yet meeting of the travel minds at Meet Plan Go 2011. The idea is for panels of inspiration speakers to share what they’ve learned about taking time off so attendees can take the necessary steps to plan their own adventure.

I’m thrilled to share that I’ll be joining fellow panelists Rita FoleyLisa Sciambra, Charles Scott and host Rainer Jenss, for the event in New York City (check this link for additional Meet Plan Go events nationwide). Together, we’ll be sharing how we made our own “great escapes” and answering attendees’ questions about saving for the journey, dealing with pre-trip planning, giving notice and making the most of your time away.

Here’s the info on the NYC Meet Plan Go Event

Hostelling International
The Ballroom
891 Amsterdam Ave
Tickets: $15;
Date: October 18, 2011
Doors: 6pm

If you haven’t already signed up, I hope you’ll do so asap as this event sold out last year!

See you there (and we hope, on the road!)

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