It was like a blinding flash of the obvious when I woke at daft o’clock this morning to write this article. Funny thing is that this seems to be the best time for me to write, having gone to bed about 9pm I am able to wake in the early hours of sunday morning with all the inspiration to write my blogs and of course the peace and quiet of a tranquil home. I find I only do this during the holidays or weekends so it is like my mind knows that when I finish I can go back to bed and sleep for as long as I like.
I have learned over the past few years to notice what is happening when I am at my best and work with it. Now that I know that I write at my best when I have had a sleep then I can almost plan to let that happen. Sometimes if I have to write an article mid-week or at a time I am under pressure I will have a half hour power nap just before. On the whole though I book my diary out with no appointments for every school holiday meaning I have a writing opportunity now every 6 weeks and of course most weekends as I generally keep them free to relax and be with my family and friends. My children being teenagers would rather stay up till 12 midnight and sleep in Sunday morning, my husband is more like the teenagers so for one night at week it works. So the question is have you worked out your own pattern your own rhythm for working at your best.
Whereabouts in a day or a week are you working at your best?
Do you fully understand what you need from yourself and others to work at your best?
One of the reason Mark my husband and business partner decided to join the business and give up doing IT full-time on an employed basis was because the hours they work meant he was not able to work at a time that ensured he was at his best. Mark actually works better if he can get up when he wakes up, go for a run and then work solidly until the job is done. Getting up at 5.30am or 6am is completely against his natural body clock. He is a natural riser at about 8am (he is doing an 4 month IT contract again now helping his old company out and he has really noticed the difference) With the knowledge of what he needs to work at his best he has ensured that despite the early starts he has maintained his fitness and has allowed himself the ability to stay up late and sleep in at the weekends but soon this project will be 7 days a week. Luckily he knows it is only for 4 months so he can manage it successfully. But I wonder how many of you are working at the time that is best for you? It might sound like a tall order, you maybe thinking too many other people and factors influence it, however in my experience pretty much like Mark when you know what you need to work at your best you can adapt your environment to be more suitable than not. Mark can’t change his start time, well actually he can but he worked out that maintaining his fitness levels was the most important factor to maintaining working at his best and therefore it was better to get up early and come home in time for our circuits class at Bishop Waltham at 7.30pm with Belinda Butler every Thursday, to find time to run at least twice a week, than to go in later and come home later. He worked out that if he got home at 6.30pm he could run before dinner but found it hard to manage a run before work even with the later start. There is often many aspects which is why our unique facilitation process is so powerful at helping you unravel all the elements focusing your attention on what matters right now to you.
At Step by Step Listening we work with clients to help them understand what is happening when they are working at their best, of course there are a number of different aspects of working and we do work with a full range from sole traders, small business owners and even parents. Clients often start with a different outcome like when I am running a meeting at my best or when I am parenting at my best or when I am managing my team at my best. The great thing is that when you do this consistently the iterative learning means you can really begin to understand how you work at your best. You will begin to notice patterns that are the same in lots of different environments that is when you really start to know yourself and can play to your own patterns, strengths and natural way of doing things. Life becomes so much easier when you do that, you will gain a sense of going with the flow instead of feeling like you are trying to row up the rapids.
Can I invite you to take a moment and write what ever comes to mind down on a sheet of A4 paper and keep writing without really thinking too much just let the thoughts flow for up to 3 pages. If you find yourself struggling to find anything else to write then look back over the words and select a couple of words you have repeated or that stand out to you and ask yourself:
What kind of ……..is that………? and is there anything else about…….? and then write your thoughts down.
Please do share your experience below I love to hear what is happening.
Thanks for Listening
P.S If you are interested in a certified facilitator working with you to explore this further we run:
- Power Journey Retreats (the next one is 30th Mar to 1st April)
- Power Groups in Hampshire UK face to face and by phone
- The Listening Post (the next one is 20th January 9.30 to 12.30 at our home office)
- Leadership Retreat Breaks (16th July to 20th July and 13th August to 17th August)
We would love to work with you and we are happy for you to book a FREE 30 minute consultation to see if we are the right people for you or if you live locally you can attend the first session of The Listening Post for free simply book by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org and Billie-Jo and Lisa will be happy to book that for you.