Is your pace destroying your productivity?


My husband is a fast walker. Super fast.

In the early years of living in the city, I lost him (or he lost me?) more than once on the crowded streets and subway terminals. After I called him and we located each other, I remember joking with him that if we ever had children he cannot leave them in the dust as he does me.

I *can* keep pace with him. I’m actually a pretty fast walker too, and can adopt a long stride to keep up. But when I do, I usually find myself grabbing him by the arm a little ways down the sidewalk saying “I have to slow down.”

Thankfully he doesn’t put me on a skateboard and pull me along beside him.* Instead, we slow down.

Walking at his pace takes most of my focus and immediate resources. I can’t pay attention to anything else, I definitely can’t be in conversation, and when we get to where we’re going, I’m frazzled.

His pace makes him feel fired up and in flow. It makes me feel scattered and out of sync.

We live in a hurry up world. Productivity - which reigns supreme - means getting more done in less time.

But so many of us fall into the trap that being productive means moving faster.
Hustling. Picking up the pace.
But not if it doesn’t work for you.

I have a client who often remarks how long it takes her to accomplish things.

A few months ago, she had a major project that was top priority but other things (life, business, kids) were threatening to squeeze it out. She kept coming back to it, working a process that she had clearly honed over the years - of spending a little bit of time every day on it, walking away, pondering, and then returning to it the next day. And repeat.

In the end, she shared with me the finished project. It was superb. With a tweak or two here or there, it was complete and ready to be shared with the world.

This pace works for her.

If she tried to rush through the project, it maybe wouldn’t have gotten done. And it most probably wouldn’t be up to her standards.

So much of the time we feel the pressure to speed up. Or even to slow down. Either way, we are matching someone else’s idea of what an ideal pace is.

A more worthy goal is to find YOUR pace.

When you find your pace, you tap into your presence, your awareness, your flow, your brilliance. You engage fully with what you have before you. You know when to settle into a rhythm or speed up and slow down as your intuition guides you. You tap into your creative energy, and in doing so, you are able to find your own kind of efficiency.

Stop trying to create at other people’s paces.

Find your own pace, and therein lies your productivity.

*My husband’s solution for making sure the kids can keep up with him.

*My husband’s solution for making sure the kids can keep up with him.


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