This week it’s all systems on shut-down while I polish the last touches to my latest book. There’s a virtual note upon the door and my mobile phone is on silent. Even my cats have been asked not seek my attention by jumping up on to my lap or walking across my computer keyboard.

The problem is, every hour or so, I come up for some air and realize how dull life is without the usual interruptions.   There’s no Schumann piano CD playing in the background, no nipping out to the shops or calling a friend. Not even a sneaky five minutes on Facebook!

My colleagues, so far, have also been very respectful so I have absolutely no excuses for the late or non-delivery of  the final version of  ‘The Change Manager’s Handbook’ on the twelfth of January. There’s nowhere to hide now.

It’s been a good Christmas, the twelve days have flown by and with just two slices of Christmas cake and two matching mince pies left, I think my wife and I have paced ourselves just right! The smoked salmon too, is all but gone and  so tonight when we take down the Christmas lights and decorations we can reflect that all in all what we gave and what we received were very much appreciated and in balance.

In case you had forgotten, tomorrow is the sixth of January which means I need to move to a new, even more reclusive hideaway because in this part of Belgium, young children go from door to door singing songs celebrating the fact that the three kings have finally arrived.

I don’t mean to be mean, especially at the time of year when I should be hugging and kissing and saying ‘Happy New Year’ to one and all from the extended community but, believe me, I am not always as disciplined as I would like to be and right now I need to remain face down, completing what should have been completed, six months ago!

So please do not disturb me – even though I dearly wish you would!

Happy New Year,