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Taking a Strategic Pause for Productivity

Do you work to live or live to work? If you are the person who can relate to “lives to work” this post about taking a strategic pause is just for you.

You may often be found saying “I am so busy” …  this word “busy” has almost become a badge of pride and a sense of importance for most people who “live to work” and who are achievers and business leaders. We feel that we are adding value in the world when we are being busy and filling up our days with meetings, tasks and events to attend.

“Busy and productive are very different.”

Busy is not productive. The quote “Good, better, best. Never let it rest, until your good is better and your better is best.” Does this quote really describe a good strategy for innovation, creativity and balance?

The most productive and creative leaders focus their time and energy on the essentials. In the book Essentialism by Greg McKeown, reminds us that we always have a choice and he describes how we can get the important things done more often by focusing on the essentials and eliminating the clutter around us and the busyness. Choice is a powerful thing to possess, we forget that how we plan to spend our life is up to us, we are in control of the choices we make.

“When people don’t take time out, they stop being productive.”

Juliet Funt, speaker and consultant of “The whitespace at work” explains that drive, excellence, information and activity are all contributors to loss in productivity. She states “drive can be overdrive, excellence can be perfection, information becomes an overload and activity starts becoming frenzy” and encourages people to take a strategic pause to bring more creativity into the workplace.

 After a long year, mental fatigue can affect your attitude and your outlook towards your daily life so take a break this holiday, investing time with family and friends is important but take time for you, enjoy a quiet space to think, pause and reflect.

“Invest in Rest”

Plan a new way to feel energised. Sleep is a good strategic tool for any leader. Most leaders are not sleeping enough on average per day; they are sleeping 4-5 hours when they should be sleeping 7-8 hours. Sleep is an important part of creativity, peak performance and to reduce the level of stress.

Start a new habit when you rise each morning, instead of checking your phone, emails and the latest breaking news. Get up earlier to take a walk or read an inspiring book. Set the pace of your day from the start.

Tips to include a Strategic Pause in your day:

  • Take 10 – 15 minutes during your day to pause/reflect on decisions.
  • Get more sleep.
  • Start your day outdoors with a walk to be inspired.
  • Read a book for pure relaxation instead of a goal to learn.
  • Go to your happy place that puts you in inspired mode.




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