I have lived in the New England for almost nine years and until a couple of years ago, I didn’t own any snow gear. You see, having grown up in the northeastern coast of Brazil, in the beautiful tropical city of Recife, I never had to deal with snow pants, snow boots or shoveling.
When my kids were little, I would “get away” with it by bringing buckets of snow into the house after a storm, and letting them play with the snow in the warmth and comfort of our home. But as they got bigger, so did their desire to go out and play in the snow, to build snowmen, sled and have snow ball fights. The first year I took the children sledding, I wore jeans and Uggs. Needless to say, I was wet and freezing and convinced that I really did hate the cold. Two years ago, believing that I might actually enjoy the cold and snow if I had the right gear, I went shopping. A few hours later, I emerged as a true New Englander!
As a productivity expert, I know how important it is to have the right tools available to get your tasks done. The right email processing system, calendar and prioritizing tools can give you the much needed edge on the constant fight to increase output while decreasing time and stress.
As you probably know, New England was hit with a blizzard earlier this week. Where I live, we got a little over 2 feet of snow. Armed with my new waterproof pants, boots and gloves, and a heavy-duty coat, I took the kids sledding. We had a blast!
I was completely absorbed by our activity and entered a state of flow – “an optimal state of consciousness, when you feel and perform your best. It’s the moment of total absorption. Time speeds up or slows down like a freeze-frame effect. Mental and physical ability go through roof, and the brain takes in more information per second, processing it more deeply,” says Steven Kotler, author of The Rise of Superman: Decoding the Science of Ultimate Human Performance.
Also known as being “in the zone,” you experience flow when you are fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment in the activity you are performing. In order for you to reach flow, the activity being performed must also be challenging and rewarding. When you create the conditions to experience flow in the workplace, you increase morale and performance by fostering a sense of greater happiness and accomplishment.
As you climb up the levels of the Peak Productivity Pyramid, you start to put in place the conditions necessary to experience flow. With a greater sense of control over your time, less distractions, more focus, and the right tools at your disposal, entering “the zone” and therefore increasing your performance and happiness becomes an achievable goal.
After two exhilarating snow days, my children went back to school today. I already miss them and am looking forward to more fun in the snow, armed with the right gear and a desire to be in the zone.