The perks of being unavailable

“The perks of being unavailable” is the title [1] of a podcast episode in the series, What’s Essential by Greg McKeown. Greg and his work came to my attention last year when I read his book: Essentialism, The discipline of doing less. A key takeaway for me from the book was about boundaries. In particular, the choices I make to do/not do something.

Responsibility for precious personal resources

Everyday there are choices about what gets my time, my attention, and my energy. These are precious personal resources that have finite capacity. I choose where to spend these, and how much I spend. I’m intentional in using a financial metaphor, ‘spend’. It helps me to think of these resources as having a quantity, and the potential to apply a budget for apportioning these for things that are important to me.

You can easily give away your time, attention and energy by being very available, without thinking about the consequences. It may feel selfish to hold back, or restrict what you expend. It may be obligation or guilt that influences your choices. This becomes a more challenging matter when mixing the personal with work circumstances.

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Helen Palmer, Founder of Self unLimited, has experienced many workscape situations that challenged boundaries. She thinks about such things to create advice that helps others navigate the changing nature of workplaces and workplace expectations. She’s a strong advocate for self-care, and getting real and practical to prevent harm and enable people to do their best work.


(Amended) Photo by elizabeth lies on Unsplash