I’m convinced the key to almost anything, starts with slowing down.

Want to change a habit? Slow down first.
Want to learn something new? Slow down to try.
Want to understand something about yourself or someone else? Slow down to pay attention.

Slowing down comes up in every conversation with every leader I work with. Recently, I received feedback from a client’s manager that she wanted my client to be more strategic and less in the weeds. Easier said than done, and there’s not a 5 step easy checklist to think strategically.

So, where did we start? We started by slowing down. We got curious about the things that pulled her back into the weeds, and started to understand when and why that happens. We brainstormed some questions that could help her come up to a higher level of thinking. We came up with a strategy for how she can notice herself getting pulled down, and pause before giving into that habituated behavior.

With this plan, she to learn more about herself and her leadership style. She also got some clear direction on how to shift into a more strategic mindset, as well as knowledge of the places that might make that more difficult for her.

My lens is that of leadership, but the practice for any kind of shift starts in the same place – with slowing down.

When you look at areas of your life, where can you slow down to get ahead?