Working Reactively vs Working Proactively

Kwindla Hultman Kramer
1 min readMar 30


Okay, so here’s something I think about at least once a week, but don’t have a great way to think about.

How much should I be reactive, jumping in and helping people with things and solving problems and unblocking stuff, and nudging and providing context that I think is important versus how much should I be proactive, making a to-do list and prioritizing the things on that to-do list over everything else, and being ruthless about blocking out time to check things off the priorities list. Most of the time I feel like I’m too reactive. I let things pile up on the to-do list and instead I answer questions that pop up on Slack or accept meeting invites, which are important. (They always seem like they’re important!)

Every morning when I wake up, I have a huge pile of unread emails and Slack posts, and if I don’t make my way through that backlog pretty early in the day, there’s a lot of stuff I won’t be up to speed on. But if I do spend time on email and Slack early in the day, then a lot of the day is gone by the time I’m done doing that.

And so how do I make progress on the to-do list in that case?

How do you find the right balance between being reactive and being proactive?

Today’s music is Kendrick Scott, Ruben Rogers and Walter Smith III playing “One Door Closes, Another Opens” from the new Kendrick Scott album “Corridors”.



Kwindla Hultman Kramer (formerly Pluot), Oblong, Media Matters for America, AllAfrica -