Definition: Easily accomplished (Latin, French origins)
“Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler.” – Einstein
When I started training to be a facilitator, I learnt where the word facilitator came from – facile. To help make things easy to accomplish.
That was it, my job was to maker things easier for others to their jobs well.
People like James Clear in his book Atomic Habits also promotes making things easier when you are trying to take on new routines.
Cal Newport in his book Deep Work is advocating for setting up guidelines to make deep work easier.
Why would we try to make it hard for ourselves?
We should be doing what we can to make our lives and those we work with easier or simpler to help them and us achieve our goals.
This starts at home and continues into the work itself.
At home it begins with things like ensuring we get the best possible sleep, eating heathy meals (which can vary between individuals), getting enough sunlight and exercise. Simple things in themselves but each can affect our happiness and performance, particularly when added together.
If we are not happy, our energy and focus suffers, which will in turn affect our work. And as we get to work, how do we structure our days so we can be the best we can be?
It can be having specific routines and clear expectations. This will allow you and your direct reports to know exactly what is required, when and how.
There is a peace of mind and clarity in knowing what to do and how to do it.
For example, every day, before I get to the office I have listed my 3 Most Important Things (MITs) . They are my focus for the day – outside of my routine tasks. My day will already be busy so by having these priorities I can say no to casual, generally less important requests and focus on daily responsibilities and my 3 MITs.
I think of it like this: at the end of each day I am going to mentally reflect on how I went, even just casually. Was it a good day or a bad day? And then, what caused it to be good or bad? What was in my control and what was not?
If I allow the tasks of the day to jumble up and cause chaos that is my responsibility alone. Yes, there will be days where the “proverbial really hits the fan” and I need to throw my plans out, but over 221* working days in a year, most of those days I will be in relative control.
I will be in control because I have plans, routines and execution strategies to help me focus and keep things simple. I don’t need any further friction.
I do these things to make my life easier. Work, sometimes, is not easy but I don’t have it make it harder than it needs to be either.
*221 working days is determined as follows (in Australia):
- 365 days in a year
- – 104 days are 2 day weekends
- – 20 days are annual leave (if taken)
- – 10 days are public holidays
- – 10 days are sick leave (if taken)