Slow Down to Hurry Up

In my OASIS Conversation courses, I consistently emphasize a paradoxical truth: we need to slow down to hurry up. The urgency of our daily lives can easily deceive us into thinking we don’t have the luxury to pause, connect with ourselves, and extend empathy to others. The perpetual race against time pushes us to expedite processes, believing we’re making things happen.

Yet, when we consciously choose to decelerate on our path to a desired outcome, we unlock the profound benefits of active listening and genuine connection–with ourselves and those around us. Our default inclination is often to sprint towards solutions. For instance, consider a team member who fails to deliver a report on the specified day. If your response is a prompt reminder without a moment to pause and listen, you might be missing the underlying reasons for the delay. Absent empathy and understanding, tension brews, potentially souring the relationship. The paradox is that while urgency insists on swift action, the oversight of not pausing and understanding can double the time required to mend a misunderstanding or address an underlying issue.

When I remind myself to slow down to hurry up, the initial step involves a deliberate deceleration, redirecting my attention and awareness toward the matter at hand. This intentional pause grants me the presence to engage with others, to listen genuinely, and to empathize. In these moments of deliberate pause, incredible insights and resolutions emerge.

I am eager to hear about your experiences of slowing down to hurry up. What do you notice?

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