We hear a great deal about the frustration our clients face as they deal with the demands in their lives.  In many cases, we can see (because we have some distance) that the frustration is more a result of not having the right tools to responds to life’s demands rather than the demand itself.  For almost every challenge we are confronted with, there are tools (some physical, many not) that would make the challenge easier and increase the likelihood of success. 


For most physical projects we all understand the importance of having the right tools.  For instance, we would never ask a carpenter to frame a building without a hammer, a painter to paint a room without a brush, or a mechanic to replace an engine without a hoist.  Yet, when it comes to business and specifically to managing people, the number of people who dive in without the proper tools to succeed is a constant source of surprise for us.


Of all the tools you need to succeed in business today, we would argue that the most important tool is the ability to work with and engage people. To develop the tools you need to manage, engage, and relate to the wide range of people who you bump into and work with in any week, you need to have a good understanding of yourself and you need to be curious about others.


This week we are going to talk about one of the tools you can use to get a better understanding of yourself to move forward effectively. 


The first and probably most simple tool we offer our clients is the Fundamental Pause.  With this tool, we ask you to take a moment, a breath, a sip of water, bathroom break, . . .  to think about what you are going to do or say before you do or say it.


It seems so simple, we know, but it’s challenging to pause when you are in the middle of an interaction.  It’s tempting to do what you have always done – to use the tools in your current toolkit.  And, if they have been effective in creating great working relationships and solid engagement, go for it.  But for most of us, the simple fundamental pause can be game changer.


We invite you to take a moment this week and play with the Fundamental Pause – at least once a day.  Your goal is change your reactivity by consciously shifting away from your automatic reactions and giving yourself time to respond and move into a new way of thinking about or seeing a situation.