I was working away on a *brilliant* post for this week when I read something that got my britches in a twist.
A tweet. Said something like,
“What would your week be like if you spent all your time in action?”
“Being in action.” It’s kinda buzz-wordy. I say it. Tara says it. It does means something, and it can be darn hard to do. We need guidance and strategies to make it happen. But we don’t need to be in action all. the. time.
Maybe I’m picking nits. But I think words matter. It’s how we describe our world, and when the words change, the thoughts they represent change. So I’m gonna change the words here a bit. But first, let’s look at “action.”
When you are in action, you are productive and moving towards a goal. But you can easily to be “doing stuff” and simultaneously skirting the real work & the real action. Sometimes I write blog posts to avoid doing activities more directly related to my bottom line. But the blog posts need to be written anyway, so aren’t I technically being productive? Technically, sure. But I’m being productive to avoid (harder) income generating activity.
So “action” is retired for a few minutes. Instead, I want you to consider “engagement.”
Engagement speaks to the kind of energy and intention you bring to your work. When I do my blogging dance thing, I’m actually disengaged; I am doing a task to avoid other work. When I am fully engaged, I am invested, present, and available for the task or experience at hand. Yes, experience. You don’t have to be “doing” to be engaged. You are open. Sensitive. There’s no BS. It’s a simple state.
Think about things you do often. Are you engaged or disengaged when you…
- watch tv
- attend a religious service
- do dishes
- play with your kids
- give a birthday present
- call your parents
As an actor, I rarely watch tv in a disengaged state. I’m not “in action;” heck, I’m sacked out on my couch. But I am present and observant and learning. I’m engaged.