It gets pointed out to be, by friends and strangers alike, how busy I look. I know it’s meant as a compliment. For me though, the word busy is a source of tension. Being busy doesn’t mean that one is successful or happy, they just look like they’re doing a lot of stuff. In our culture, doing a lot, to the point of exhaustion, has become socially valued. I rebel against that notion. Having been on both sides of that aisle, I can confidently say that being busy and doing a lot is not the way to happiness and a fulfilling life. In Chinese, the word “busy” translates as “kill the heart”. I’m not looking for that outcome, nor do I want that for my clients.
I’m more partial to doing things effectively and joyfully. A method that has worked really well for me is to find my peak time. The peak time is that period of the day that you’re more likely to do a certain activity when the process is easy and fluid and the result is superior.
For example, I can get a lot done virtually in the morning. I get up at 5:30am and after a light breakfast and some movement, I can get my most important work done before lunch. Doing that same kind of activity in the afternoon would be grueling for me! I have a friend that does his virtual work in the evening, that’s his peak time. It will be different for everybody. The trick is to explore and find what works for you.
Because the activity flows easily, we’ll get more joy out of it too! Your heart never lies! Check in with yourself in your discovery process to see what works and what doesn’t. It may happen on occasion that some activity need be scheduled at a less than ideal time. I find it productive to prepare for those assignment with self care. I seldom do virtual work or give consultations past 5pm. I’ll do it if it’s an emergency and I will reflect and center myself specifically for it as it is outside my peak time and natural flow. We still need to have some flexibility and get the work done, no need to brutalize ourselves in the process though. Self care always comes first.
I also like to look at the flow of activities and if I partner some activities together, how productive will that be. I can rehearse a speech and do the dishes at the same time, that works for me. I find myself less productive if I jump from returning emails and making phone calls. I prefer to do one, then the other. Again, everybody is different, discover what works best for you.
That system has allowed me to get a lot of stuff done in a short period of time, that’s great time management, and find joy in the process, that’s emotional productivity. I invite you to search for your ideal system. It may take some time and tweaking, however, it’s been a game changer for me. I hope it helps you too.
Reach for the greatest version of yourself!
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