If a focus on the outcome and the extrinsic aspects of an activity are conducive to anxiety and depression, then the objective quality of my work, whether washing dishes or writing grant proposals, will likely be lowered, given what we know about the adverse effects of negative emotion on performance. So seeking the extrinsic outcome makes the failure to achieve that outcome more likely. A focus on the process and intrinsic qualities of an activity reduces the likelihood of anxiety and depression (thus eliminating their negative impact on performance), increases the pleasure of joy during the process, and thus increases the likelihood of achieving the extrinsic outcome. I have to let go of the desired outcome in order to acquire it. What a paradoxical and strange way to live.
Borkovec, T. D. (2002) Life in the future versus life in the present. Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice, 9, 76–80.