Productivity |noun| the rate at which goods and services having exchange value are brought forth or produced
I’m baby steps onto this trail, but nonetheless that has proven itself time enough for my first little demon to appear. I’ve decided to call him Zeit.
Can we really be surprised that Zeit has decided to pay me a visit? After all, how can anyone think that after ten years of proselytization to the urgency of answering emails within the hour, checking our Blackberrys first thing in the morning and last thing at night (great if you can check once in the middle of the night as well, should New York or Brazil somehow play into your current deal), keeping radar attention to the flashing red light on this device whenever we choose to audaciously sit down somewhere for lunch, diligently crossing out items on the Sisyphus-like transaction to-do lists that somehow always get longer, never shorter – after years of this sedimentary accumulation of dehumanizing habits, how could we think we would just wake-up one day and break free from our marble prison like some Michelangelo masterpiece jaunting about calm, perfect, unscathed, available to beauty?
Having turned off my Blackberry, Facebook and all other possible distractions, I gave myself over to thought while looking out of the huge industrial window from where I now live. All of a sudden, Geist – the good demon – knocked on the pane and I realized that at that exact moment I was being productive. Although not a word was being set to the page (yet), I was allowing my mind to freely explore, dissect, muse, even if haphazardly and that was actually bringing me to some rather essential conclusions: I have to turn-off and unplug, before I can really tune-in.
But this is a productivity not measured in documents produced and tasks completed as in days of yore, but contents itself with sitting at a window, pen in hand, waiting for Geist to playfully engage with me through the lines I tentatively try to pin down, while Zeit is kept at bay. Michelangelo once said “a beautiful thing never gives so much pain as does failing to hear and see it.” Being productive is hearing and seeing that beautiful thing. It’s tuning-in.
(By the way, Zeit left me a little present. It’s a white Blackberry. I´m sure he thinks the color will deceive me.)