In this always-on, go-go, no-rest-for-the-weary time, it's easy to get caught up in the whirlwind. If we dare look up from our keypads, we can start feeling overtaken by events. We get scared. We react. We make poor decisions. We feel exhausted.
We've gotten so obsessed by on-demand everything that anything less than an immediate response feels wrong. But I think it's actually right. Very right. After all,
I'm not in a duel, where lightning-quick reflexes can mean the difference between life and death. I'm not in a crisis situation, where fight or flight is required for survival. I'm a writer and a strategist. That gives me the luxury of time. And I'm taking it.
This week I started making a concerted effort to slow down. Nothing happened. Nothing went wrong. I simply decided I didn't like feeling rushed. So I'm taking seconds, minutes, maybe an hour or two before weighing in or acting. And it's working. When I take my foot off the gas, it's easier to see the landscape.
The added time doestn' always change my initial response. Most of the time, it makes that idea better, more considered, more detailed. Waiting gives me time to hone my gut reactions into smoother solutions. Allows me to gather more data -- from my own "data banks" and from others so I can make even more knowledgeable decisions. And I feel better. I can breathe.
It's not always easy not to blurt out the first good idea that crosses my mind, but I'm developing some discipline around this. I'm liking it so far. And my clients seem to be liking it, too.