Peaceful Productivity

David Graham May 12, 2020

Monthly Newsletter


After an extended period of keeping our distance, we can’t help but miss the simple pleasures in life.

I miss that sweet feeling of connection when I step through the door of a loved one, being greeted with a warm hug and a friendly smile. My mom says that she misses the happy chatter from the dining room while she cooks away in the kitchen. On the flip side, one of my work colleagues longs for her morning commute; the quiet reflection time while she’s away from the hustle and bustle of her busy family life.

There is no doubt we’re each having to adjust to our current experiences and all the things we’re missing. However, I believe that this is a unique opportunity to take a step back and redesign our day. Personally, I’ve been getting signs that I need to slow down and approach the day with gentleness—a patient curiosity for how I can stay productive while finding ways to be peaceful during the day.

My first victory was completing the book, “Rest,” which ironically sat untouched on my bedside table for months. Alex Soojung-Kim Pang suggests that most of us focus our energy on how to work better, but we don’t consider how to rest better. When we make the time for adequate sleep, a recharging power nap, a long walk in nature or even an extended sabbatical, we can actually become more productive.

Taking time to rest sounds easy, but for someone who measures their success by the number of items they check on their to do list, it can be a challenging task. I tried with limited success and then something magical happened…

My new rubber boots arrived!

There they were on my doorstep in all their waterproof glory. But what does this have to do with rest you may wonder?

You see, you can’t run in rubber boots. Not only will you twist your ankle, but you look ridiculous! But slip on a pair of wellies and there’s no muddy bog that you can’t explore; you’re ready to splash around a puddle or meander along the river’s edge. Most importantly, you slow down and appreciate the earth beneath your feet and you notice all the small things in nature that would normally pass you by.

There is beauty all around us! I’ve come to realize that it’s okay to find moments of unbridled joy in the midst of extreme hardship, and it’s certainly okay to have complicated feelings about what’s going on in the world. Times are tough, but this is a period of radical transformation and we have to believe that a brighter future awaits tomorrow.

  • What are you learning about yourself right now?
  • What is your secret sauce to being a more positive force?
  • What is your version of peaceful productivity?


David Graham

Dave coaches good leaders who want to be great leaders and he works with leaders to build high performing, super-focused teams. For transformational experiences, he takes teams out of the boardroom and into nature.