Interrupt Reactivity

Last week in our post, Holidazed?, we talked about 4 things you can do to position yourself for a fun, hectic, connecting, tiring holiday—one that leaves you proud of how you showed up and how you managed your priorities.
 
We started with PAUSE, which many of you know is the first step in our Leader in You framework.

The PAUSE can look like taking a small sip of water, a shuffling of papers, or a full out break from the action; but during that moment you’re asking yourself, “Is what I’m doing or what I’m about to do or say in alignment with my goals?” 

The PAUSE supports you in decreasing your reactivity and increasing your ability to reflect on what you’re doing so you can choose how to respond. We’ve done a lot of leadership training and coaching, and truly, this simple nugget can change your life. 

So, what do we mean by reactivity?

When we talk about reactivity,
we’re talking about the very human tendency
to do what we’ve always done in the past

In some ways, we humans are a bit like a light switch, hit the switch and the light goes on; there is an Action – Reaction relationship. As you think about this time of year it might look like this:

ACTION REACTION
Your boss asks you to get something done and you hear urgency in her voice. You drop everything to do that work.
Your colleague is mad that a report is late. You apologize (and sweat) profusely.
Your kids want to go look at Christmas lights NOW! You feel annoyed but grab the car keys.
Your partner asks you to do something that you have no time to do. You say yes outside and feel angry inside.

While you may believe you have no other choice, unlike light switches, we humans can PAUSE to grab that moment between hitting the switch and the light going on, to choosing how to respond.  

ACTION  PAUSE RESPONSE
Your boss asks you to get something done and you hear urgency in her voice. You ask for more information and explore the flexibility in due date.
Your colleague is mad that a report is late. You listen closely and ask for details to assess what you need to do for damage control.
Your kids want to go look at Christmas lights NOW! You offer to look at lights after you spend an hour getting some high priority work done.
Your partner asks you to do something that you have no time to do. You suggest that the two of you sit down and prioritize what needs to be done during this time.

The PAUSE is a powerful, yet simple, step that can help you be a better leader in your work, your life, and your joy.

Pausing allows you to respond
with your best thinking

and understanding of your current goals.

Next time you find yourself reacting, ask yourself, “Is what I am about to say or do in alignment with my goals?” If it’s not, consider how you can respond to be in alignment with your goals.
 
Try it out and let us know how it goes!

~ Linda, Stephanie, and Heather

If you would like support in developing your leadership skills, 
contact us today about our Executive Coaching.

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