“How many hours a day will you work as a writer?” a friend of mine at work asked.
This is relevant because I’m spending a lot of effort studying work hours and organizational effectiveness. And it’s relevant because I’ve taken a lot of this work to leadership for overall discussion and awareness. It’s relevant because there’s a lot of interest in the subject, though I’m not sure anyone knows what to do with it. In other words, I’m having fun with it, but I’m not certain it’s going to impact much, yet.
“I have no idea,” I said. “I guess is depends on whether you consider doing things like cutting the grass as work.”
And he said something like, “ah, okay, so you’ll be working less than a full time job.” Those aren’t his exact words. I don’t remember his exact words. But that was the thought behind them. I understand why he would say that, and in truth I guess he’s right enough. But that misses the point. Cutting the grass is very important for me. I don’t like it. It’s not fun. But it’s a simple, repetitive task that allows me to disconnect physically and mentally from whatever I’m focused on and let ideas from other places crash together
As usual, I have ton more to say on this subject, but I’m out of time this morning. So I’ll just leave you for now with this.
Some of my best work is done while I’m cutting the grass, or while I’m walking around in Mill Race Park, or while I’m meditating (to some it might look like zoning out, but that’s their problem!) over lunch … and I mean that “best work thing” for both my job in Corporate America and for my writing gig.
If you want to do great work, find ways to step back for moments. Break up your day. It’s okay, really. It works out better in the end. And, yes, I would still say I’m working at those moments.
If others don’t get it, well, that’s their loss, right?