Great musicians claim that their music comes to life
because of the spaces between the notes. Artists
use the dark areas to bring the colors to life.
Similarly, the spaces between your hardest working
efforts allow ideas and solutions to incubate and
When Leonardo da Vinci was working on The Last
Supper, he spent many days on the scaffold,
painting from dawn till dusk; then, without warning,
he would take a break for a few days. The prior of
Santa Maria delle Grazie who contracted for his
services was not amused. He would beg Leonardo to
continue with the work. He preferred that Leonardo
"just like the labourers hoeing in the garden, never
to have laid down his brush."
Leonardo tried to persuade the old gentleman that
"the greatest geniuses sometimes accomplish
more then they work less."
A few minutes ago, while I was writing this item,
some tree trimmers nearby cut our power line. After
my initial thoughts of "arggghhX@#!," I went
outside to find a
gorgeous sunny fall day, fed a treat to our fish,
walked back on our nature trail, saw a neighbor who
informed me they're expecting a new baby this week,
and chatted briefly with the tree trimmers (they
anticipated my anger but by then I choose to
compliment them on the work they were doing).
Then Joanne and I enjoyed a lite lunch on our front
deck, undisturbed by phones and computers.
By the time I returned to find the power restored, I
had several new ideas that had come to mind.
Although you may not find your boss accepting of the
idea that "the greatest geniuses sometimes
accomplish more when they work less," this
process is as natural as inhaling and exhaling in our
breathing. Welcome the planned or unexpected
rhythms in your life as periods of incubation for your