Is ease possible in a climate of urgency?

By Cindy Vallance

I have recently written about the first two principles highlighted in Nancy Kline’s book “Time to Think.” The principle that follows on from ATTENTION and EQUALITY is that of EASE. Ease – this sounds like something we might make time for during an evening or at the weekend – if at all…and certainly not anything we have time for when we are at work. However, I have certainly heard people, myself included, say to others, “I am so busy, I just don’t seem to have the time to think.”

But isn’t it the “doing” that produces results? Yes – and the results we achieve are wholly dependent on the thinking that has preceded the doing. How can we achieve ease of thinking for ourselves and others?

A small way to practice ease is when someone approaches us, whether for an impromptu check in or a scheduled meeting where some thinking is required, focus on them. Not your watch or your to do list. Don’t tap your fingers or fidget (physically or metaphorically) or appear ready to spring up and dart away. Tell the person up front how much time you have; for instance “I have five minutes before my next meeting but during that time I am all yours.” If you really don’t have five minutes, perhaps it is best to find another time. If you create a climate of ease for them they will be able to think more clearly. And hopefully, they will return the favour to help you think.


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