Productivity Panic

I’M NOT GETTING ENOUGH DONE I’M NOT GETTING ENOUGH DONE! I’M NOT GETTING ENOUGH DONE.

This is what my mind keeps screeching at me. For one thing, I keep rewriting the introduction to my self-help book, so even though I get ten pages written every day, I NEVER GET PAST TEN PAGES. It’s like Groundhog Day, only with more screaming.

So I’m in a productivity panic.

It takes me back to a day I spent at the home of television producer Norman Lear and his lovely wife Lyn. They’d assembled a few people to meet and work with my go-to spiritual master, Byron Katie, so she could help us dissolve our tormenting thoughts.

Now, Norman Lear is arguably the most successful TV producer of all time. He lives on a Beverly Hill. Just one. I’m serious. Someone just flattened the top of a mountain in Hollywood and slapped a huge estate right up on it. The “gate house,” where I slept, is bigger than my actual house.

We gathered in the movie-screening room of the Lears’ house, surrounded by amazing modern art and thousands of hard-bound scripts for Norman’s massive, culture-transforming hit TV shows. These shows helped tens of millions of people become kinder, more open-minded, less racist, just generally better.

At 93, Norman is still laser-sharp and ridiculously productive — after all, that’s what he does, he produces. But when we all voiced our most tormenting thoughts, Norman Lear write down?

“I’M NOT GETTING ENOUGH DONE.”

I mean, how much is enough? If Norman Lear isn’t getting enough done, just hit me with a shovel and raise a goat instead.

So now I’m going to write those ten Groundhog Day pages again, on my lame-ass computer that has no “C” key. Then I’m going to think of Norman Lear, realize that we can never do enough for our lying, abusive egos, and let go of my compulsion to produce. This moment is my life. Just by living it, I’m getting enough done.

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