So You Think Being Productive Means Doing Something?

Do you ever feel like you are stuck on your perch?

Have you ever felt like you run up against road block after road block? Does every choice you make seem to leave you feeling even less productive? Do you sometimes sit and stare off into space thinking to yourself, “I’m not getting anywhere?

Rejoicefully, I admit that I have felt this way. And I’ve wondered what about my situation leaves me feeling like this. I have come to the conclusion that it’s the lack of control I feel about the direction my life is heading and that if I don’t do something I’ll get nowhere! I’ll fail. The sense of needing control thwarts my efforts in productivity.

Do I want control?

Yes! And the more I am doing, the more in control I am. The more I am doing, the more productive I am. Right? Do you feel that way? And then do you end up flying around in circles? When I get like this I need to take a step back. I need to breathe. I need to remember that it’s my ego that needs to be in control so I can feel productive. But guess what? If I was in control I’d screw it all up! I really don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes. I don’t know what the results of all my efforts will be, so all I can do is surrender control to the unseen forces that have a birds eye view of all that I am here to accomplish while I am on Earth.

I need to keep reminding myself that I am in control of nothing but my thoughts, words, and actions–not the outcome. I need to remember that there is much more in motion, even when I am doing nothing.

I understand the impulse to judge.

I’m just finishing up my (mostly personal) business trip to California. Due to lack of internet availability (and desire to find it) I am feeling less productive than usual. I spoke with Michelle today and after a short conversation, she said, “..and we have a business…” I am seduced into feeling like if I don’t do something everything I’ve done to this point will be for naught. I’m shaming myself into believing that I am failing because I haven’t written enough or been on-line enough or shamed myself enough… Why do I do that? Do you do that? Listen carefully… Stop it!

Here is the simple truth: Productivity is easy!

Recently I was helping a friend organize three years worth of paperwork. In about 12 hours of non-stop sorting we filled up a 60 gallon recycling bin. It’s been a process! There has been resistance and judgment (not on my part of course) and awareness. As I listened to my friend, I learned how easy it is to be productive. The secret is to be present. When you need to eat, eat. When you need to sleep, sleep. When you need to sort, sort. And when you need to sit, sit.

Michelle tells a story of her daughter trying to get from rock A in the creek to rock B in the creek. “Mommy, I want to go over there.” Then in a beautiful demonstration of productivity, her daughter looks down at the rocks beneath her feet and begins her trip. One rock at a time with an occasional glance up at the big picture, a fall or two, and a couple rests on some of the bigger rocks, and before you know it she has reached her destination. Not one view, but the ability to look at the big picture and what needs to get done and then the ability to shift the view to what is right in front of you–sometimes that means sitting down.

Remember your life purpose.

Sometimes you will work hard and fast and you will get a lot done. In this physical world it is a prized value to accomplish…something…anything…. I’m asking you to look outside of the model of productivity you have known and invite in a more empowering perspective.

One of the reasons I am here is to connect. It’s part of my purpose. If I maintain the awareness of living my purpose in each moment, then productivity doesn’t need to look like productivity. Maybe I’m getting things done when all I’m ‘doing’ is writing my vision from an outside table at a tequila bistro in Boulder.

I have been connecting with lots of people, but because it doesn’t look good on paper, maybe it doesn’t count. It does count! It absolutely counts. Don’t let your old way of thinking minimize your productivity. Months ago I made a declaration. I invented my own affirmation; here it is:

Everything I do; every interaction, every thing I write, every thought I have, every connection I make, every desire I have, every project I engage in, every person I support, everything! leads to the success of my the full expression of my purpose. Everything!

This is what I need to remember when I doubt. This is what I need to remember when I am not as productive as I ‘should’ be. This is what I need to remember as I engage the world in ways that don’t look good on paper. I’m reminded of some writing I did a couple months ago that has resulted in a business contact that I am very excited about. I didn’t have even an inkling of the impact my writing would have. There are literally hundreds of events, interactions, connections that are leading me into my highest expression–which this business is a container for that expression. It’s a container for living my purpose! I remember the ‘chance’ meeting I had with Michelle in a parking lot a year and a half ago. And the phone call I had with her on my porch that led to our partnership.  I am productive even when I am sitting on my perch. I mean porch.

How does living your purpose lead to productivity?

Can you make some connections to your productivity? How does living your purpose lead to productivity? How do you maintain a level of awareness around living your purpose, even when you are feeling unproductive? What is one thing you can do to recognize your own productivity even when you are perched?

When you are following your passion and living your purpose, you will be productive even when it doesn’t feel like it… So make an affirmation for yourself. Post it where you will be reminded of the bigger truth. And above all remember that in order to get somewhere, you need to take a rest on the porch every once in a while, catch your breath, and take in the beauty. Getting there is not a one stop flight.

Share with us your experience of productivity…maybe some of the judgments and expectations you have about yourself.  Is there another perspective you could adopt that would allow you to enjoy the process more? How do you spiritual gifts get epressed through your productivity?

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