Lessons Learned #13 – Working in the Zone

This post is part of a series that began here. By sharing my “lessons learned” I hope to illustrate the power of this daily practice of gentle self-observation. Please follow along and share your own.

I’ve been working through a long list of minutiae the past couple days – which  is typical of the first week of the month.

I really don’t want these small tasks to take any longer than they need to, so I’ve been trying to work quickly.  “Do, don’t think,” has been my mantra.

But man-o-man am I having trouble getting to inbox zero – there are messages that have remained stubbornly unanswered all week.

Which made no sense until I read Charlie Gilkey’s post this morning on his blog Productive Flourishing.

It’s all about how sometimes email is a connective task that is also a creative task, so it’s better to do it when you are in your creative zone. Brilliant.

But that also got me to thinking more about my connective zone…

Being an introvert, I get my energy from my interior world rather than the exterior world.  To put it more plainly – unlike an extrovert who gets energy from being with other people – socializing (even via email) often takes a bit out of me.  So it doesn’t make sense to schedule my more challenging connective tasks at times when I’m likely to be depleted – late afternoon or evening for example.

I’ve become protective of my creative zone, but after this great light bulb moment today, I now see that my creative time will need to overlap with or give way to some connecting time – and that’s not the misordering of priorities I thought it to be.

[If you could see inside my head right now, you would notice a lot of gleeful mental skipping about, as there is now a way out of the stuckness that isn’t do less – which is what I feared to be the answer – but do differently.]

Yep, I can feel some schedule tweeking coming on…


1 Response to “Lessons Learned #13 – Working in the Zone”

  1. 1 JoVE February 6, 2009 at 5:47 am

    Great insight. Charlie is further down my blogroll, but you are the 2nd person to mention his post. Must go read.

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Third Hand Works

from overwhelmed to ready for anything | organization and time management for people in their "right" minds | administrative guidance for independent creative professionals [more info]



© 2008 Cairene MacDonald, Third Hand Works. All Rights Reserved.

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