There are two approaches to work.
- Clock in/clock out.
You show up, but don’t play to the best of your ability. Physically, you’re there. But mentally, you’re somewhere else.
After clocking in, you spend the day asking yourself, “is it time to clock out yet?” And when you get home in the evening, your only thought is, “I have to be back at work tomorrow morning.”
Dread. Resignation. Reluctance. Lethargy. Powerlessness, helplessness and anxiety. These are the feelings you are most intimate with.
- Lock in/lock out.
You’re single minded. You are fully engaged with the task. Immersed in it. It has your undivided attention. Nothing else enters your mind during the performance of the task except the task itself.
And when you’re done with it, you’re done with it. It is effectively banished from your mind.
Intensity. Energy. Drive. Power. Control. These are the things you feel flowing through your mind and fingertips.
The latter is, naturally, preferable. But it’s not always possible. Days of clocking in and out are inevitable. But if, on balance, you spend more of your time locking in/locking out, you’ll be happier, more fulfilled, and I suspect, a lot more successful.