At our very core, it’s clear and well known that slowing down helps us be at ease, to pay attention and to think better.

Better thinking leads to better decisions – better leadership.

Have you ever been around someone who is calm and at ease and you’ve felt a calming influence wash over you? Did you have a sense of clarity as a by-product of the calming influence?

To initiate more of this calm and greater ease, there are three approaches that will help:

  1. Stop referring to your day as putting out fires. Unless you’re a real fire-fighter, talking about your work, even in part, as something that requires urgency, tension, reaction rather than response, then your frame of thinking will not ease. Your words matter. If it’s not a fire, it’s not a fire. If it’s not emergency surgery, it’s not an emergency. Be a calming influence to those around you (even those senior to you). An environment of constant tension and fire-fighting can instil and sustain fear – people cannot think and deliver to their full potential when they are afraid.
  2. Be fully present for others. Put down the device, look up from the screen, turn and take in the person. And online, put the camera on, blank the second screen, and zone everything else out. Listen intently the first time from the first moment.
  3. Speak last, ask the person to share more, empower their thinking. Linked to point two, avoid simply waiting to speak, waiting to solve, waiting to give the decision or answer. Invite more thinking from the other person.

As a leader, your role is to help your people deliver their best. These three approaches will do that, they will create the environment and presence for better thinking which leads to better outcomes.

The way you race through your day sets the pace for everyone, all day!

Sally Foley-Lewis

These approaches will enhance your coaching skills, employee engagement, team building and self-leadership, to name a few.

I’d love to know your thoughts on being and demonstrating calm, share your thoughts below.

I appreciate you