Do you feel like you are always working working working, with little or underwhelming fruit? Does your workday leave you feeling tired, ineffective and unfulfilled? This is actually very common in leaders and their teams.
Sometimes we have to slow down to speed up; and build some white space into our hectic schedules. We are not wired for a sprint; we’re built for a marathon. Like all good runners we have to pace ourselves if we want to win. As the great piece of racing advice says, “to finish first, first you have to finish”.
There is a very good physical reason for this. Our physiology is built so that under stress we operate closer to the ‘fight or flight’ part of our brain, further done the brain stem. We stop operating effectively in the frontal cortex, where our ideas, creativity and higher thoughts are active. This is why we have great ideas and an almost constant stream of schemes and dreams, once we’ve relaxed on holiday. Or that good idea that comes to us in the shower.
Imagine how well we would operate if we were de-stressed and activating our full brain capacity in our everyday?
So how do we do this? Build in micro-breaks, stop, take a walk, refresh and the enhanced brain function can help you complete tasks, have ideas, treat people better and be kinder to yourself.
Be centered and relaxed whenever possible. What do you have in your day that helps center you? Maybe that’s walking the dog, exercise, meditation, prayer, reading a novel, finding some quiet space.
Whatever you have in your world that helps you centre, find some peace and be your authentic self, do more of that, schedule it in. Think of it as an important appointment, not self-indulgence.
You may think it is time wasting, but actually you’re banking productivity and creativity to be more effective at whatever you do.
Our lives are built on foundations. Have time for the disciplines of life. Look after your Body Soul and Spirit and “slow down to speed up”.