212/365 We all need that Thinking Time

‘Thinking’ or may be the time to ‘THINK’ is getting scarce now. Are people stressed and overworked because they don’t have enough time to ‘THINK’? Our little handheld devices take such a lot of our time. Distractions, incomplete work and jumping from one priority to other, all leave people stressed and overworked. I am just putting the question out there for us to ‘THINK’.

If we were to take a 15 minutes or half hour every now and then in a day to ‘THINK’ we might be able to gain a bit of time. A 15 minutes taken to de-clutter mind and inbox or table and listing some priorities on a paper to streamline the next few hours. It surely with make us agile…

Yes I can feel that smile on some faces that ask “How can we fight or ignore our doubly booked calendars?”

You don’t fight it, you also don’t ignore it. I used to be in a consulting engagement a few years back where I used to be at three meetings at the same time. Well not literally, but I would be in the background ready to help.

I used to be a CMS Consultant providing Content Management SME support on several projects at the same time. Like I used to get invited to several meetings that overlap. My technique was to take some time to ‘THINK’. As soon as I get those meetings I schedule some ‘THINKING TIME’ primarily to see what would be expected of me in the meeting and what I can contribute. The goal was to identify the meeting where I have least contribution and instead of declining, reaching out to the PM or the meeting host and in email or chat make sure they have everything from me prior to the meeting if possible.

I was not like that before, I was forced to take that route and this is how. I was instructed not to work more than 8 hours. In fact no laptop to take my work home. I had to finish what I need to finish within the 8 hours I am paid for.

You got no choice, if you have only 8 hours you will get it done, that is human psychology. I THINK if you can do it in a consulting job, we can take that to a Full Time job too and perform well in 8 hours.

You could do this even without the THINKING time. But for me it was so much more easy when I took some time to THINK. Ever since then I always have this THINKING time added into my daily routine and I do it during my walks, or just sitting in my chair and sometimes even when I have to sit through boring meetings I just cannot avoid.

It is our responsibility to be cognizant of our time and use it in the best way to deliver results for the company that pays us. If someone tells you that they worked over weekend on a regular basis I think your responsibility is to see how that can be avoided. If you are the manager, instead of patting the person’s back, see why it happened. THINK…..


Categories: Being Agile, Enjoying Life and Work, Work & Career

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