Can You Be Productive and Enjoy It?


Do you ever do this? You need to get something done and as you set out to do it you become intense, serious, and most regrettably, unhappy? Why is that??

I’ve been thinking about this lately and I want to change this in myself. With any problem, if you can dissect it and understand it then you can change some of the component parts for a different outcome. Let’s try it!!

Task I MUST Complete

So I have a task that I must complete. The key word here is MUST. This is where the anxiety starts. Maybe I have an actual deadline (packing for a trip) or maybe the task is associated with a goal (exercising), say losing weight. Or maybe the “task” is associated with a creative goal or hobby (art, dance, etc) that should be fun and joyful.

But instead I am focused on MUST DO.

The anxiety stems from the Fear that I won’t get it done. I’m sort of telling myself, “I don’t trust  you to get this done so I’m going to bring in the boot camp enforcer to ensure you get it done.” Ugh, not the bootcamp enforcer!!

So now I’m feeling doubly horrible. I’m fearing I won’t get this “must do” task done AND also I’m going to be doing it under the humorless direction of a drill instructor.

The Solution

(Queue the angelic epiphanous music) heavenly sound – short

The outcome I want is to get important things done and still be tapped into joy. There are a few things I think will help yield this outcome:

  1. Trust Myself to get things done. How? Failproof it.
    1. Prioritize Goals – both daily and long-term.
    2. Set a Daily Plan with realistic time scheduling.
    3. Execute the plan.
    4. Acknowledge success – to demonstrate my trustworthiness to my self.
  2. Replace Negative Self-Criticism with Self-Love.
    1. Cultivate compassion for myself and others.
    2. Eliminate critical words – in thoughts and voice.
    3. Replace with more compassionate, positive, encouraging words to change thinking habits.
  3. Assume Attitude of Confidence about accomplishing my daily plan and my goals in general.
    1. MANTRAS
      1. Today is going to be a great day.
      2. I am doing well.
      3. I am winning.
      4. I am making progress.
      5. I can do this.
      6. I will do this.
      7. Good job.
    2. Use Smiling as a physical trigger to generate confidence.
  4. Replace Drill Sargent with Practical Time Evaluation.
    1. Be mindful of time wasting activities/habits when doing tasks. When you find yourself doing them, don’t criticize, just move back on track.
    2. Watch time but allow for partial completion of tasks. Don’t give up. You can continue tomorrow.
  5. Find the Joy in the task. Look for the good that will come of the completed task. Enjoy the task itself.
    1. Is it physical? Feel how it good it can feel to move your body.
    2. Is it mental? Appreciate the mental stimulation.
    3. Is it “boring?” Surrender to the restfulness of boring.
  6. Review Daily Accomplishments.
    1. Write them down. This will cement it in your brain.
    2. Share your successes with someone. Share your joy and perhaps they will share theirs.

The bottom line is to replace FEAR with CONFIDENCE that not only will you get your tasks done, but even if you don’t and as long as you did your best – everything is going to be OK in the long run.

Really. It will all be OK. 🙂

(Now I just need to make sure I do these things! Will you remind me? :-))

Please Share!

Are you able to be happy while you are working? Does it come natural or do you have a trick? Let’s talk!

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