how i'm flowing through to dos
I can completely understand how someone might think that my focus on alignment before action and finding flow would be completely unproductive or an excuse to be lazy. For me, it’s important that I’m putting my best into my work and that means working when it feels awesome to do so. I value quality work over quantity which means that if I’m only working on something because I “should” then it’s not the energy and quality I want to bring to my work.
Even still, there are things that need doing - social media to schedule, articles to write. I do have rough goals to hit so how can I do that when I only work when I feel like it? Well first of all, I have a job that I love to do which does make a world of difference. Outside of that though, I approach my to-do lists differently than I used to.
I used to be VERY obsessed with productivity. I derived my self-worth from my ability to be productive and get things done. I was flying the workaholic flag with pride. So when I would sit down in the morning, I did what any reasonable person would do and tackle my to-do list in order of priority. There’s nothing wrong with this method, but now I’m not aiming for productivity over everything and I approach things from a quality and flow mindset.
I certainly still keep a running to do list – I’m not sure how people get things done without at least one list. But now when I sit down in the morning, I look at the list and decide which 3 things I WANT to do instead of which 3 things I NEED to do. Here’s the thing, my work is best when I’m inspired and excited to do it. So trudging through scheduling social media when I don’t feel like doing it just doesn’t work for me. Instead, I do the thing I feel would be most enjoyable in the moment, which might be doing research on a new tool I need or answering emails.
And do you know what is amazing, it all still gets done in a reasonable time frame anyway! Basically, you’re just avoiding the resistance which ends up saving you time in the long run. I typically end up getting more work done in the day because I didn’t spend an extra hour working on a task when I wasn’t inspired to do it. Instead, I feel good about flowing from task to task because I’ve built up momentum in my workflow and I’m enjoying what I’m doing.
Are there times, especially in a corporate job, when you need do things you don’t want to do – absolutely. But applying the principle of flowing through your to-do list can still help in those situations! Maybe you’ve got a big project due and you’re dreading it, but you feel the need to start on it right away. Try this instead – do one thing on your list that you want to do first. Something easy and manageable that will make you feel like you’ve got your first win of the day under your belt (bonus points if you get into alignment before you even start your workday)! And on the days when you have less time-constraints, give the quality over productivity method a shot. See how flowing through your to-do lists works for you. I’d love to hear your results!