First, find joy.
This is 100% a principle that Jess Lively teaches. When you hear Jess teach on The Lively Show, she’ll call it alignment. What I learned to do in her online Flow course was notice when I was feeling rotten, and seek joy first. If you’re interested, Jess has a whole range of techniques she’ll teach you in Flow With Intention Online.
If you can make yourself happier before you tackle anything, you’ll achieve more, faster.
It’s ridiculously simple: we work better when we feel better.
So how can we feel joy?
You’ll find your own way, but for me one of the best ways is through music. I work from home as a novelist, blogger and copywriter, so I can easily put on a favourite song. (Headsets mean maybe you can, too, in the office or on the bus?) Another favourite for me is a quick walk outside. I never feel like doing this, but when I make myself do it, I can access joy. Or this: looking at pretty things. How green a leaf is, the shape of my favourite coffee mug, the smell of cinnamon in a spice container, how soft my dog’s ears are.
Unfortunately, it’s easy to seek joy in a lot of unhealthy ways. Should I list a few? Three glasses of merlot, a family sized bar of Cadbury’s chocolate, hours of Netflix, avoidance. Anything that is stopping you from feeling is not seeking joy.
You might think that once you learn the principle of ‘Alignment before action,’ as Jess calls it, or finding joy first (as I think of it), you will always live this way because it works so much better.
Yes, it works better.
Nope, you will not remember and live this way.
Or I don’t, anyway. I have to remind myself of this lesson almost every day. I find myself feeling sort of crummy in a nebulous way, not wanting to work, not feeling inspired and then I remember (again): oh yeah, I’m not in alignment. I need to seek joy.
Notice the negative feelings.
Switch on joy.
Then start your work…and see how much better your results will be.