I don’t do this very often…in fact, I don’t think I’ve ever done it. But today’s blog post is, in essence, a love letter to someone else’s blog post. Because I’m pretty sure that me and this blog post were made for each other.
It’s not a new post…but it’s still so incredibly relevant. It will remain on my all-time favorite posts list until the internet slows its pace on pumping out productivity post after productivity post, seemingly intent on turning us into machines that quickly + efficiently do All The Things at record pace, without wasting time or idling, even for a nanosecond.
This post I love dovetails perfectly with the other end of the spectrum. The viewpoint that says ease up, and be happy, and let things fall into place. The viewpoint that makes you sigh with relief, and relax to enjoy a nice, deep breath. The viewpoint that makes you think…”I want that please. Sounds much better.”
The viewpoint that says, be a Productivity Unicorn.
(Even without knowing what that means, I know you already want to be one. But just hold on to your fabulous hat until you hear the details—because it gets better than the name.)
I like to think of myself as a productive person. I’m reliable at work to handle a load of projects and deliver quality work, on time. I run a business in my spare time, and still find time to do fun things without being a person who is so overwhelmed she starts acting crazy. Mostly. (That last statement has not always been the truth, so I’m quite proud of that last bit.)
As I’ve progressed along my own journey, I have learned that “productivity systems” don’t account for certain things. Crucial things. Like sitting in the bathtub and thinking. Stopping to pet your cat whenever the hell you want. Spontaneous, seat-of-your-pants decisions that simply must be made, for your health and happiness.
What’s more, I have learned if your “organization system” is failing, it doesn’t make you a failure, it just means the systems failed. And that’s just fine. You exist separately from your systems and your ability to organize. Your life and your worth are not wrapped up in those things.
My own productivity practices now acknowledge that my life doesn’t have to be completely structured and systematized…in fact, I will not hesitate in saying it should not be. My year’s goal has been to make space, and I’ve found that when I make space in my days, I am far more effective…and happier, too.
In fact, the greatest creative clarity I’ve had all year (and possibly my whole life) came after a weekend during which I decided to ditch my list of “obligations” for a weekend and do whatever I felt like. Only when I stopped trying to force clarity, productivity and efficiency did my really good ideas start to flow. Plus, I felt rested, relaxed and energized.
I’ve said my piece, but I strongly urge you to read the full post that prompted this outpouring of adoration on Get Bullish. Here are a few of my favorite highlights, which are all direct quotes from Jen:
- Unicorns do whatever they want, but what they want is beautiful and perfect.
- People who do everything on their lists suffer from a lack of critical thinking.
- Unicorns do what comes naturally, and sparkles fly everywhere. But what unicorns naturally enjoy is helping the wronged, punishing evildoers, and purifying mountain streams with the life-force of their horns.
- You know what people say when they see a unicorn? They say “Ohmygod, a unicorn!” just before they go blind from all the gloriousness.
I feel I’ve made my point.
P.S. I kind of want this.