In the morning I have done 2 hours of undisturbed work, Then took a break and followed up with another 3 hours of undisturbed work. I got so many things done. With in the process I have created my own framework for the GV-SPRINT which can be used in any number of days up to 5. That is something. Which means I am all good to facilitate a SPRINT workshop in any time frame, even with multiple groups. I even had the time to revamp the slide deck. All feel refreshed and reinvented. Guess I found my flow.
Seems easy, but had to do many things. 1) All the to-do lists were pushed for the next day to clear up the mind to focus on this one thing, with out any guilt. 2) Kept the phone on silent mode for the entire time. 3) Did not pick up the phone even in the break 4) All 5 hours were spent on one area of work. So mind was free to work deep. 5) Though I used the laptop, I used it with wifi off. When I wanted few resources to refer, I connected to internet and switched off again. 6) No social media, no emails.
Have you flip through business magazines and news papers with dozens of PR articles, but never stop to check what’s in them ? You are not alone. It is not just because they are boring, we all know they are lies biased. 1) The articles project organisations as places that did no wrong, not doing any wrong and will not do any wrong. We all know that is just fairy tale. ( Even fairy tales have demons to whack) 2) The leader of the organisation quotes lot of statistics to prove his point : ” my organisation is the best”. Numbers make people yawn. 3) Social media have dug up the dark side of organisations. People know. Shareholders know.
The opportunity in PR articles is to tell a honest story about what they are doing well against the challenges and competition. People love to hear a story.
Isn’t this manipulation ? No. People will know a honest story when they hear it.
Many organisations have called themselves digital before Covid19.
The pandemic identified all our camouflages.
These organisations had some of their marketing in digital but all other aspects were stuck in analog.They had the shock of their lives in 2020.Going forward now, we have the question in front of us: are we going back to what it was ?
Are we stepping back on the digital initiatives we have taken because we were forced during the pandemic?
Are we going to cancel the work from home because now we can come to office ?Nothing will make us prepared for the future, if digital is stuck in marketing. We need to move digital from marketing to the business model.If digital is not rooted in the business model, we can safely say, we are doing business as usual.
Getting to know Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi ( Let’s just call him Mihaly and forget the surname 🙂 ) was a life changer.
Who is Mihaly ?
(From positive psychology) Mihaly became a happiness researcher because of the adversity he faced growing up. He was a prisoner during World War II, and he witnessed the pain and suffering of the people around him during this time. As a result, he developed a curiosity about happiness and contentment.
He observed that many people were unable to live a life of contentment after their jobs, homes, and security were lost during the war. After the war, he took an interest in art, philosophy, and religion as a way to answer the question, What creates a life worth living?
What is FLOW? Mihaly coined the term “flow state” because many of the people he interviewed described their optimal states of performance as instances when their work simply flowed out of them without much effort.
He explains flow state in detail in his book ‘Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience’ I read parts of the book and many articles and happily used those insights in my life. But to be honest, nothing beats the 18 minutes below. This is his TED talk.
It’s happening all around us. Jobs are vanishing. Yet many jobs are created fresh in new areas we have not heard before.
Advancing yourself with in an organisation as a ladder is not sustainable. Not desirable by employees as well.
Skills will not make you safe.
The correct mindset will supersede your existing skill set. If you think your skills are static and you only have this much of strengths, you need to have a new mindset. Only the mindset fixed on curiosity and wanting to ride the new changes will upgrade them selves frequently. Like it or not, everybody out there is now required to act like a businessman. Even when you work inside an organisation.
Anything you want to learn is available here and now, on your mobile phone. What is missing ? Your attention.
You might have thousands of connections in your social media accounts. You might be going to networking events. Who will succeed are not necessarily the ones who have huge number of connections. The one who create meaningful actual collaborations starting with few people will thrive. The best marketing is the referral from a satisfied customer.
About five years ago, I had a meeting with a very successful person. He had it all. But at that time of our meeting a very few, including me, knew he was going through a devastating phase of his life. He was sick, almost every business he was doing was collapsing, he was in debt, and he was about to take another loan on a new business.
He was so casual about the explanation. His story made me anxious about his future. But he was cool as a cucumber.
I asked him “Are you not worried?”
He snapped “Does it help my situation?”
That was one hell of a one liner. I thought he was bluffing. You know what is the kicker? Five years later, he’s now back in the game, better than where he was. He was not bluffing. He was true to his one liner.
We are living in an era where we 1) are constantly running out of time 2) also we can just binge away our time anyway we want it.
We are living in an era where time is an oxymoron.
The reality is we say yes to so many things that comes our way. Those small yes’s cancer its’ way through to our attention, to whatever there that is left. The problem with too many yes’s is that we lose touch with our inner voice.
We pick battles we know we cannot win. We become obsessed with complaints. We pick the smallest of bad apples out of sea of good vibes. We avoid hard questions about our lives. We emotionally conquer war on issues we have no control over whereas our own problems get pushed aside, thinking they will vanish somehow.
The way to realise our true self is by saying NO. saying NO to everything that comes our way so that we say NO as a habit. Why ? because we are primed to say yes out of courtesy, out of fear of missing out or just because we do not know how to say NO gracefully.
Saying no to many things releases our time and attention to things that matters to us
“Garbage in, garbage out” is true for processes and algorithms.
For our mind and body though, it is “garbage in, garbage accumulate”
The information we let our minds consume and the food we take in to our bodies grow our minds and bodies.
Too much consumption leads to lethargy in both mind and body.
The popular solution is meditation and exercise. But we find hard to start them.
The onboarding questions we can ask our selves are : How can I reduce the intake of information? How can I reduce taking unnecessary calories?
If we act on the 2 questions, we have reduced the garbage in, right from the source. We have less information to filter and less calories to burn. Then onboarding meditation and exercise becomes much easier.
I used to be a person who took vacations to escape from life. I thought that was the whole idea of it. So I would try to experience as much as I can during the vacation. I covered many places in short time, ate more and took hundreds of pictures to put on social media. I wanted the perfect experience, nothing could escape my needy attention.
That chapter is over.
The new chapter is different. Before vacation : the new approach to work. – The purpose of vacation now is not to escape from what I have. Because if I do, no matter what my intentions, I will carry them with me, in my mind, in my travels. – Now, instead I work with more sincerity and urgency at my financials, my emotions and my health before I take the vacation. – I would ask my self hard questions and try to answer/solve them.These are the questions I have avoided in life, because they are hard. – I have avoided the escape routes which are readily available to us like social media and binging TV series. I am not avoiding TV series, I am avoiding the process of binging.
The vacation: Relaxed exploring. – Now the purpose of the vacation is to explore new things and people. But I would select a limited number of activities. I would have conversations with local vendors, residents and staff of the hotels. – During the vacation I would be grateful for the time to relax and for the people who make that experience for me. I have seen people who come on vacation and get in to the hotel without unburdening themselves from their status in the social hierarchy. They are unkind to staff of hotels, local vendors and service providers. Though I was not that extreme, small doses of entitlement and expecting perfectionism was in me. I have witnessed that and affirmed myself not to be that. – I would go to the buffet and have a walk around the full offering without getting myself a plate. The plan is to pick what I would eat. Because consuming all in the buffet, no matter how tempting, is not good for my health or to enjoy the meal. Abundance is the path to misery. I would only pick and take portions that I am sure I will enjoy. No regrets later that I ate too much.
You might be thinking that this process is just too much and it’s not the way to enjoy when things are offered in abundance to you. I am not here to advocate or judge, simply sharing what is making me more peaceful and let me relax.