Adjust Your Pace for Perspective

Have you ever thought about how stepping out of the day-to-day into a new space offers a new perspective? It seems so simple, but sometimes working at a coffee shop instead of your office opens up creativity. Stepping out of the rigor of the lengthy “to-do” list to dedicate time to think strategically or generate ideas or assess something that recently happened can create the opportunity to see differently. 

In the crazy of the 2020 pandemic, my husband and I deferred our annual cabin trip. It was appropriate at the time, but I don’t think we realized all we left behind in that decision until we went to that same cabin this year. 

“Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you.”

~ Anne Lamott, Author

That space away from the regular rhythm of life is actually hard but necessary. It feels like we need to just keep plugging away if we are to accomplish the things on our plate. However, stepping out of the day-to-day is an important component of our wholeness . . . every part of who we are benefits when we step back and just look around and take stock of who we are and think about who we want to be. 

When was the last time you stepped back and asked yourself what you want . . . for this project, in this ministry, in this situation? It’s easy to get off track when we don’t pause and ask this question prayerfully..

How do you like to pause?

  • Plan a get-a-way
  • Work at a coffee shop
  • Take a walk to give your brain a break
  • Set aside time to meditate or pray
  • Draw or doodle for a while

One can pause with a trip to “the cabin” like I recently did and gain a bigger picture perspective on the daily activities. More importantly we can pause throughout the day with little daily rhythms that give us a bit of a brain break each time. Sometimes, though, we need a bigger break to hit the reset button that gives us the capacity to process the more challenging elements we are facing

Next Steps

Take a look at your calendar.  Are there times in the day when you can see yourself being able to pause? If so, can you commit to taking the time to do so? If your calendar is overflowing what might you do to create opportunities to build in at least one pause a day to start? Try it and see what difference it makes.

Ina recent Side by Side Podcast episode with April Diaz we talked about investing in ourselves as leaders so that we can live and lead from wholeness. It was a powerful conversation that fueled my own efforts to make the investment in myself. Listen in and learn what might be your next effort to invest in your own life and leadership. 

Comment below about what strategies will help you to pursue your investment.

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Annie Perdue Olson

Annie is founder of Leading Better Together, guiding leaders through the relationship and people challenges that sidetrack ministry. With 20+ years of experience in nonprofit management and pastoral ministry she equips people and teams to work better together. She holds a Master of Arts in Human Resources and Change Leadership from St. Thomas University and received her coaching certification from the Center for Coaching Excellence.

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