Inner Productivity by Chris Edgar

by Tess on November 3, 2009

chris edgar4 219x300 Inner Productivity by Chris Edgar

 ”Inner Productivity: A Mindful Approach to Efficiency
and Enjoyment in Your Work”  -Chris Edgar

Today I’m reviewing Chris Edgar’s new book. If you are underpaid, over worked or unhappy in your workplace I urge you to consider getting a copy today.

What makes Chris Edgar’s book stand out from other books on productivity is he empathizes focusing on your inner experience instead of changing your outer circumstances. 

Chris gives us mini case studies derived from his coaching and exercises, that help you look within, transform your specific patterns of thinking and feelings that hold you back.

The exercises in each chapter allow you to cultivate your “inner productivity.”  When you connect to your inner self you become empowered to act new ways, choose a new perspective and achieve greater results.

 “I’ve broken down what I call “inner productivity”—the ideal mental and emotional state for finding the most productivity and satisfaction in your work—into three elements. I call these and Attention, Intention Foundation.” Chris Edgar

1. Attention

 It’s necessary to become aware of our inner experience at work; our thoughts, feelings and sensations. Everyone has a different perspective of what happens at work. My unique perception doesn’t make it reality. It’s just my perception.

My perception is where my power lies. By changing my perception I change my experience and become more focused and motivated, even enjoying what I do.

“When we simply keep ourselves aware of the difference between reality and our inner experience of it, we start to see that we actually have some choice around how we experience the world. Just recognizing that we have this kind of choice can have powerful effects.” Page 31

2. Intention

 Chris uses the word intention to mean a clear idea of the goal you’re working toward, and a passion about that goal you can physically feel. 

“The lack of a clear, driving intention is a common reason we have trouble following organization and time management strategies.”

” When we come upon a goal that actually gives us a bodily feeling of inspiration, we transcend productivity tips and tricks to accomplish what we want and start enjoying what we do with ease, our motivation feels natural, and we produce our best-quality work.” Page 72  

3. FoundationIt’s necessary to develop unconditional love and acceptance for ourselves. Entering the zone is impossible if we fear making mistakes, compare our work to others or feel inadequate. 

“If you have a deep-seated appreciation for yourself that doesn’t depend on how your career, relationships, or any other aspect of your life is “going,” productivity, and the state of flow, are more ready available.” Page 138

“If your self-love is solid enough, you won’t be paralyzed with self-criticism or fear of failure. This is why I call your sense of unconditional and acceptance your foundation.”  Page 139

If you want to be free of boredom, stress, fear, worry, comparisons, anxiety and shame at work grab a copy of “Inner Productivity” today.

Often we wait until January to think about what changes we want personally and professionally in the New Year.

I would encourage anyone who wants to improve the quality of their life and work in 2010 to join me in reading the book and putting the exercises into practice. Get a head start on 2010. I wonder where our blogs would be six months from now!

chris edgar photo smallest thumbnail3 Inner Productivity by Chris EdgarChris Edgar is an author, speaker and personal coach who focuses on helping people follow their true callings in their careers, and find more enjoyment and efficiency in what they do.  Find out more about Chris’s book, Inner Productivity, and his work at

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    { 31 comments… read them below or add one }

    Patrice November 3, 2009 at 8:53 am

    “Foundation” spoke volumes to me. I find that a lot of people, including myself, have had problems with self-love. I’ve seen people gain a tremendous amount of weight, stay in unhealthy relationships, and wake up every morning to go to a job that literally makes them sick physically, mentally, and emotionally because they fear failure of not maintaining a job, being single, or the thought of not reaching their weight loss goal. I agree with Chris that self-love and sense of unconditional and acceptance should be everyone’s foundation. I will be picking up a copy. Thanks for the review.
    .-= Patrice´s last post…This Is It…Reviewed =-.


    Tess November 3, 2009 at 9:53 am

    It’s so sad to know and see people who struggle obsessed with the topics you mention. I would like to reach that population with my blog and coaching and I’m sure Chris would as well.

    I often think if we could find self-love and harness all the previous wasted energy spent on weight loss, job dissatisfaction, illness etc we could heal the world. Ya think?

    You may want to send those you know who want help our way. Thanks for your wisdom and insight.


    Ideas With A Kick November 3, 2009 at 9:54 am

    Thanks for this review. You got me interest for the book going. I like those 3 simple elements, and I can’t help but think there are some causal relations between them. My impression is that attention is the base. Get that handled and you have the base for going to intention and foundation.

    .-= Ideas With A Kick´s last post…Enough with the mind reading: get a 360 feedback! =-.


    Chris Edgar November 3, 2009 at 11:00 am

    Hi Tess — thanks so much for this review — I think it’s a great, concise summary of the three parts of inner productivity. I particularly liked the way you talked about how “Foundation,” or your appreciation and respect for yourself, is so important to helping us enter the “zone,” or that state of concentration and effortlessness that many of us want in what we do. And that’s a great point that the ideas in this book can be applied to activities outside of what we’d normally think of as “work,” such as blogging or just doing chores around the house.


    Mark November 3, 2009 at 11:49 am

    Sounds like a great read! I like Chris and the way he thinks! Very good review.
    .-= Mark´s last post…What Is Your Purpose? =-.


    Jan Lundy November 3, 2009 at 1:04 pm

    This is marvelous, Tess, and congratulations to Chris on your approach. It is wonderful to read how you have created a holistic system for people to work through and to connect to deeper places within themselves. These statements really struck me:
    “If you have a deep-seated appreciation for yourself that doesn’t depend on how your career, relationships, or any other aspect of your life is “going,” productivity, and the state of flow, are more ready available.”

    “If your self-love is solid enough, you won’t be paralyzed with self-criticism or fear of failure. This is why I call your sense of unconditional and acceptance your foundation.”

    What you are really inviting us to is compassion–pure and simple. This compassion for self transforms everything, doesn’t it? And, then, when we have cultivated it for ourselves, it will natural flow out to others. And that transforms the world. :-)

    Kudos to you for forging this path in “business.” We can use about a million more of you!
    .-= Jan Lundy´s last post…Meditation Monday =-.


    Jodi at Joy Discovered November 3, 2009 at 2:38 pm

    Hi Tess,
    Thank you so much for sharing Chris’ book here on your site! You wrote a great summary!

    Chris, how wonderful that you wrote a book! Congratulations! That is such a tremendous accomplishment. I’ve read many of your blog articles and I really respect your thoughts and ideas, as well as how organized and systematic you are in laying out next steps. This book sounds great. Your three concepts which Tess outlined are wonderful. Each is SO fundamental in our happiness and performance. You nailed it! Best of luck with this book!
    .-= Jodi at Joy Discovered´s last post…A Gardening Tale =-.


    Patty - Why Not Start Now? November 3, 2009 at 3:57 pm

    Hi Tess – Thanks for sharing this info. And Chris, congratulations on the book! I’ve found the first point, attention/perception, to be especially relevant. So often people don’t realize that they have a choice about perception, that they can choose to perceive things differently. But when they make this shift, it’s like a weight is lifted. And I’ve noticed that perception is usually the biggest obstacle for most clients who are dissatisfied with work. Certainly not the only one, but it’s right up there. And it affects the quality of their work relationships and their sense of belonging, two huge indicators of work happiness.
    .-= Patty – Why Not Start Now?´s last post…How Do You Sustain Meaning In Life? =-.


    Jannie Funster November 3, 2009 at 5:25 pm

    Dear Bold Tess,

    I too aim to give a review of this excellent book, so I can’t say too much here, but suffice it to say, Chris is an super special writer and person.

    And so are you!

    Ms Funster
    Funster Global Inc.
    .-= Jannie Funster´s last post…10 Things I Could Do (But Probably Won’t) Tomorrow =-.


    Keith November 3, 2009 at 5:56 pm

    Hello Chris and Tess!

    This book sounds very cool. I really like the points that you laid out here. For me I use them in this order.
    1. Foundation (obviously), as one must love and accept themselves before effectively living and accepting others.
    2. Attention, because I must be AWARE of how things are and then how things are viewed differently by those around me. This awareness is so important.
    3. Intention, because without a clear and SPECIFIC goal I will quickly lose direction, mainly because there will not BE any direction without clarity!

    Anyway, the book sounds awesome Chris!

    Thanks for the great review Tess!
    .-= Keith´s last post…Keep The Faith! =-.


    Tess November 3, 2009 at 6:35 pm


    Yes you have a good handle on the book. I hope you check into it soon. It can be used for any area in your life. I’ll be over to check out your blog as well.

    Everyone likes Chris, how can we not. Wise, compassionate and on a roll with his coaching, speaking and new book. Yeah for Chris!

    Yes don’t we know about self-compassion and love! I agree we need a million Chris’s. I do think the world is changing for the better and Chris is on the cutting edge. He’ll be leading other business people into the new way, the better way to do business.

    Yes he is organized and systematic. That’s why the book is so good for me. I struggle with both of those.

    Yes I learned about changing my perception when my girls were teens. Thank God just in time to get me through with some sanity. It is powerful and it’s the quickest way to be peaceful. Knowing about it is one thing, I think it’s difficult to quiet our ego and be open to a shift.

    I’ve decided to start calling you by your last name. I think it says who you are. That’s great you’re doing a review too. We need to stick together and help move each other forward. Kind of like that “All I Know I Learned in Kindergarden.” So you can take my hand anytime and lead me right into more laughter and fun.

    Yeah CLARITY that’s what I need. So let’s talk in Dec my friend. Thanks for you offer to help. Isn’t life grand?


    Lori November 3, 2009 at 8:09 pm

    Hi Tess (and Chris)!
    This is great!! I was just asking Chris the other day how his book was coming and here it is, in all its glory!
    Congrats to you, Chris!!
    Thanks for a thoughtful and impressive review, too, Tess.
    I want to get a copy and so, I shall!
    P.S. I liked your reply to Keith, “Isn’t life grand?” Awesomeness, Tess!!
    .-= Lori´s last post…An Update: My Writing Experiment =-.


    Karl Staib - Work Happy Now November 3, 2009 at 8:12 pm

    This sounds like a great book for my readers as well. I’ll have to get in contact with Chris.

    A lot of the ideas in this review is very similar to what I recommend. We need to have the attention and intention to get the results that will make us happy.
    .-= Karl Staib – Work Happy Now´s last post…5 STEPS to Success =-.


    Chris Edgar November 3, 2009 at 10:56 pm

    Hi Everyone! I feel so grateful and warm to have you all as blogging buddies and again I’m honored that Tess reviewed the book on her site.

    @ Patrice — thanks, I like what you said about the idea of self-appreciation being so important in other areas of our lives apart from work.

    @ Ideas With A Kick — I agree that the three parts of inner productivity tend to reinforce each other — so that, for instance, if you have an inspiring Intention behind what you’re doing, you’ll probably have the energy to hold your Attention on your project for a longer period of time. I get the sense that working on one of them can have the others fall into place.

    @ Mark — thanks for the appreciation — I’ve really enjoyed your work as well.

    @ Jan — I think compassion for yourself is a great way to describe the main idea of the book — so often in our work, we find ourselves procrastinating because we don’t want to be with what we’re experiencing, like our worries about what the boss will think of the project, for instance. When we have real compassion for ourselves, I think, we don’t need to run away from that experience of worry — we can just allow it to be and to pass away like any other thought or emotion we have as human beings, and that’s so much easier.

    @ Jodi — thanks for the appreciation — I think those years as a lawyer had something to do with the organization in my writing today, as little as I sometimes want to admit it! :)

    @ Patty — yes, I think just noticing the assumptions we’re making about the world, and realizing they’re not reality but just our way of seeing reality, is so important to making the changes we want in our work and elsewhere.

    @ Mme. Funster — you’re super special too!

    @ Keith — I like what you said about the importance of clarity — I was just saying to an interviewer that I suspect one of the reasons many people feel so overwhelmed by e-mail is that we’re not clear on what’s really important to us. If we don’t have that clarity, we’ll treat everything as equally important, so we’ll find ourselves responding to every e-mail and phone call as it comes in and then wondering where the day went. But if we know what truly fires us up about our work, we’re going to stay focused on the tasks that really matter.

    @ Lori — thanks for the appreciation and I look forward to hearing what you think of the book.

    @ Karl — yes, it’s amazing how just developing the ability to hold our attention on a task, and knowing what we really want, can do so much more for us than knowing 100 more ways to organize our e-mail inbox, or getting 10 more killer iPhone apps.


    nitesh patel November 3, 2009 at 11:20 pm

    very nice article and this gives an insight that we should look into ourselves the attention and intention are really good
    .-= nitesh patel´s last post…Use keyboard shortcuts in Gmail to save time =-.


    Evelyn Lim November 4, 2009 at 5:23 am

    I love the take on changing our inner experiences first of all, rather than focusing on outer productivity. I certainly enjoy reading about the breakdown of inner productivity. The book sounds great! I will have to check it out!
    .-= Evelyn Lim´s last post…Make Peace with Time =-.


    Peggy November 4, 2009 at 8:07 am

    Dear Tess!

    Thank you for introducing me to Chris through this post!!

    Attention = Awareness
    Intention sets your direction
    Foundation is what you build upon – and a solid sense of self is so crucial to your own foundation.

    I’m going to check out Chris’ blog

    You ROCK Tess!!
    .-= Peggy´s last post…Emotionally Intelligent Advertising =-.


    Fannie Junster November 4, 2009 at 10:36 am

    Off-topic, sorry — delete if you must, sorry ’bout those broken “hair and hats,” links on my post today — I have fixed them!
    .-= Fannie Junster´s last post…10 Things I Could Do (But Probably Won’t) Tomorrow =-.


    Positively Present November 4, 2009 at 11:45 am

    This is awesome, Chris! I definitely need to check out the book.
    .-= Positively Present´s last post…kicking ass with kindness =-.


    Tess November 4, 2009 at 12:24 pm

    Great minds think on the same channel. Must mean you and me! You’ll love the book!

    Oh yeah! Chis and you have a lot to talk about. Maybe partner on stuff as well.

    Yes, yes and yes. I need to do what your blog post says. I’ll be over.

    Yes get the book, be bold and make needed changes today. Like I said six months from now you won’t recognize yourself. LOL

    I love to promote others who are a great fit for all my readers. Chris is a No.1 class act! Check it out.

    No problem. Stuff happens and I don’t judge. Not even typos!

    Thanks for stopping by and I hope you do.


    Patricia November 4, 2009 at 1:41 pm

    Oh thank you Tess for keeping me excited about Chris’ book…it is 3rd up on my list – I seem to be having a time crunch right now: too many good books and too many projects in the fire.

    Chris writes with such clarity and focus; I just don’t have to figure out what the metaphor is – the stories are just popping into my head to explore..

    Thank you for highlighting his work here
    .-= Patricia´s last post…Grace =-.


    Stacey Shipman November 4, 2009 at 4:53 pm

    Thanks for the review, Tess. I’ve been following Chris for a while and I really appreciate his point of view and love how he focuses on inner self – something I’ve found is often forgotten!

    Chris – congratulations again on the book!


    Tess November 4, 2009 at 7:09 pm

    I’m curious to know what is no. 1 and no.2 on your list? Thanks for stopping by and giving Chris kudos.

    Like Jan says above we need 1 million Chris’s! Of course there’s only one. Irreplacable!


    Wilma Ham November 4, 2009 at 7:39 pm

    Hi Tess and Chris.

    You do that well Tess, you might not be such a good cook as your Mom, you might shout, laugh and live too loud, you might not be organized as you wanna be but you sure can put the finer points of Chris’ book very eloquently on paper.
    What I like about Chris is that he lets you explore your reality in a way that makes sense and really gives you something you can work with. He did that for me in a question and answer session on his blog.
    He is clear and practical, actually like you Tess and I love that.
    Writing a book is amazing and congrats to you Chris.
    What I get from him is that he actually takes us back to skills that served us well as a child in learning and exploring the world boldly and fully.
    I wouldn’t mind having those skills and that experience back.
    Thanks both of you for grounding me into what is important.
    Love Wilma
    .-= Wilma Ham´s last post…Intimacy and sponsorship happen through listening; how well do we listen? =-.


    Mary B Sheffield November 5, 2009 at 6:42 am

    Hi Tess,
    Wow this post could not come at a better time ! I am going to get a copy
    of Chris’s Book asap ! :)
    I have to start w/ foundation : Self acceptance is a rough one ! I am always
    trying to strive to do better and cursing myself for not making my own grade .
    Intention is right up there also making goals and having the confidence to reach them w/out the inner deamons is hard.
    Attenti0n last but certainly not least perception is huge but right now in the world of mortgages you really have alot of lows . And becoming aware
    of the inner feelings and be able to resolve them and move beyond would be amazing !
    Thanks Tess I have high hopes that this book can give me insight and make life a little easier ! I am on my way to Chris’s sight !
    Have a wonderful weekend ! :)
    Mary Beth


    Megan "JoyGirl!" Bord November 5, 2009 at 6:51 am

    What a phenomenal sounding book; thanks for reviewing it, Tess! I love how Chris talked about intention, and what feeling passionate about something can do for our efficiency and productivity. I remember that when I worked in corporate marketing, if I was engaged in a project I just loved and for which I knew the measurable outcomes, I could work all day and night on it and time flew! On the other hand, when I was asked to do things blindly, for which I didn’t understand the intention or goal, I felt like an order taker and did my job begrudgingly. Plus, I procrastinated a lot.

    I also like how Chris framed up the importance of self-love in the workplace. I can recall being yelled at once and only once by the owner of our company who just lost his sh*t and aimed it at me. Even though I was startled and deeply shaken by the experience, I never took it personally. I knew his anger had nothing to do with me. If I hadn’t been so far along the path of self-love and acceptance at that point, I may have broken down afterward and quit!

    Great sounding book, and I wish Chris all the success in the world. Way to go!
    .-= Megan “JoyGirl!” Bord´s last post…$1 Therapy (Awesome Free e-Book) =-.


    Tess November 5, 2009 at 7:11 am

    You’re the best! You bring out the best in people. I do think you have the things you mention Chris and I do. If you didn’t you wouldn’t see it in us. “If you spot it you got it!” Thanks so much for being part of our blogging community. Your love notes make my day where ever I read them. Love ya more!

    I wish I could have been as grounded in self-love the two years I was employed by someone else. Of course that is exactly where I began to learn it on a deeper level. Those were my first experiences of irresponsible and unhappy people putting their stuff on me. I was shocked, startled but had two wonderful friends who showed me the way and said, “It’s not about you!”


    Evita November 5, 2009 at 11:26 am

    Hi Tess

    This was fantastic! I was excited when Chris shared that he had a new book coming out and here it is!

    I have been greatly inspired by Chris and the choices he has made in his life when it comes to career, and the whole professional life vs personal. I really resonate with his work too.

    I have no doubt that this book is going to be so valuable and such a great read. I love how you summarized and brought attention to the three parts!

    And you are right Tess, we don’t have to wait to a new year to make changes, each day is as good as any other to start!
    .-= Evita´s last post…Evolving Being In Action: Marcomé =-.


    Chris Edgar November 5, 2009 at 12:09 pm

    Aww, I feel so grateful for all the appreciation you’ve given in your comments.

    @ Nitesh — yes, I think we rarely see how looking inside ourselves can help us in our work, and I wanted to bring that to light with this book.

    @ Evelyn — I’m glad you liked the different perspective, and I get how your work is also about the link between spiritual practices and practical issues in our lives.

    @ Peggy — I’m glad to be introduced to you too. I think that’s a great bullet-point summary of the three elements of inner productivity.

    @ Positively Present — thanks for the appreciation and I look forward to hearing what you think.

    @ Tess — a million Chris’s! That sounds mildly scary to me but hey, if the people want it! :)

    @ Patricia — I know what you mean about so many good projects being out there — sounds like a high-quality problem! :)

    @ Stacey — yes, although there are a lot of useful productivity tricks out there, I think the inner self, like you said, has a role to play in that picture.

    @ Wilma — thanks, I think that’s a great observation — that as adults we often aren’t as curious about our experience as we were as kids, and we get into the habit of judging or running away from it. So I think we could say that Inner Productivity is about reclaiming some of that curiosity.

    @ Mary Beth — yes, that’s a good point, that Foundation is about letting go of all the ways we keep judging ourselves and our work as not enough. We tend to assume that anxiety or a sense of lack are necessary to do a good job, but in fact I think they just have us second-guess ourselves and put off our work.

    @ Megan — from what you said about having measurable criteria for success it sounds like you’ve read Flow (by psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi) — his work was a big inspiration for the exercises in Inner Productivity, which I think of as a practical guide to entering that state in our work.

    @ Evita — thanks, I’ve definitely felt inspired by your story of personal change as well.


    janice November 6, 2009 at 8:25 am

    Hi Tess and Chris,
    It’s one of the most inspiring things about blogging, the chance to see friends supporting each other like this. I also love to see what we Scots call ‘kent faces’ producing books! Good luck with it, Chris; it’s a sound, healthy approach you’ve encompassed and Tess has summarised it beautifully.
    .-= janice´s last post…A Patchwork Post: Writing Tips, Christmas Tips and Susan Boyle… =-.


    Outperforming Productivity March 29, 2010 at 3:22 am

    Hi Tess! Thanks for sharing your reviews on Chris Edgar’s Inner Productivity, Eagerly awaiting to get my hands on a copy. Please do keep on posting your useful reviews.
    .-= Outperforming Productivity´s last post…Launchy – Launch your mostly used applications in few key strokes =-.


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