Slowing Down to Achieve More
Slowing down to achieve more might seem like an oxymoron, yet it’s actually the best way I’ve found to achieve better results in your business and your life.
Most of us are chasing. We chase our dreams, the newest trends, the next big thing.
Or we’re striving. To be our best. To grow our business. To manage other people or our home.
We’re driven. We have goals, ambitions and are always ‘going for’ something.
And we’re fighting to be heard, to be seen, to stand out from our competitors.
And this way of being is exhausting! Whilst we’re young we may not think so, but for most of us it’s unsustainable. Yet we simply know no different.
Because we live in our heads. We operate from what we think we want. From what we believe we ‘should’ be doing. Or from what everyone else does, or expects from us or from a business like ours.
We’re so externally focused we rarely know how to connect fully with ourselves.
Or indeed why that’s even important.
We’re disconnected from our hearts, and souls. From our intuition. Disconnected from the part of us that ‘knows’ it really doesn’t have to be this hard!
Now you may be thinking ‘well I just need more information, knowledge, know-how or skills to achieve more. I really don’t need to connect with myself!’
Whilst that might be true for some of us some of the time, what I’ve learned through my own life experience and through managing others and running my own business, is that it’s not true for most of us most of the time, even when it looks that way!
Because we all have a deep inner knowing….about ourselves, about the nature of life, about what’s right for us going forward or in particular situations.
Yet we don’t believe this. We suppress that inner knowing. Or we disregard or discount it, because we think it’s not conventional, it’s not the norm, it’s not professional or business-like enough.
So how does this relate to slowing down and achieving more?
Firstly, you need to acknowledge what’s happening for you right now - that you’re super busy, feeling stressed or overwhelmed, and not actually achieving what you want.
This allows you to make a conscious decision to stop and take a break from the constant busyness of your life and work.
When you consciously pause, you invite your other intelligences to contribute, and you stop relying solely on your intellect. Which enables you to really listen. To sense and feel, to check in with whether what you ‘thought’ is actually what you want. To clarify.
And you can seek clarity over the medium to long term, or the short term, in relation to the specific project or task you’re working on. Because often we get caught up with working in a certain way, or on specific activities that are no longer a good fit for us, our business, or for what we’re trying to achieve in our life.
This means understanding your start point in terms of where you are currently, which can often be entirely different to where you ‘thought’ you were!
And when you have greater clarity on what you want or where you want to go, and a better understanding of where you currently are, it’s easier to get focused. To prioritise activities and tasks that will make the biggest difference to achieving your goals, or to how well or how quickly you achieve them.
Another piece of slowing down is continuously reviewing progress. Monitoring whether you’re on track and it’s feeling good, or you need to adapt.
Reviewing can sometimes lead to stopping certain activities, doing them less frequently, or spending less time on them, because these tasks are no longer likely to ‘move the needle’ for you.
My Success model diagram above might be helpful here, enabling you to see how to operate in a virtuous and continuous loop, reaching specific goals or targets, then moving on to others. Ensuring your process, or the journey is as enjoyable and productive as your end result or destination. Which will also help you feel happier about your work and achievements.
Because ‘being busy’ is simply not a good predictor of success. Whereas slowing down, to gain clarity, a deeper understanding, then to focus and review, can enable you to achieve more.
Image SuccessModel by Julie Johnson