We all know the feeling.  The pressure is on and we have to respond.  And respond we do, by working harder and acting faster.

You start by finding ways to fit in more things to accomplish.  You take more of the workload on.  You take more responsibility (actual and psychological).  And the next thing you know you feel more pressured and you start working harder and moving even faster.  And guess what, you feel even more pressured.  You’re piling more of it on you.  But you’re working harder and faster.

And you’re getting even less done or making less of an impact.  By going faster, you are going slower. That’s the paradox.

Here’s why this happens.  By working harder you start making exceptions to the routines and rituals that ground you and give you energy.  You pass on your regular exercise session to get to work sooner, you skip your daily prayer or meditation session to get to more work.  You start cancelling the important team meetings that help you stay on top of things, so you can do more work.  You start eating at your desk or skipping lunch altogether…..

Works for a few days, sure.

But you get out of rhythm, out of sync.  You start making mistakes and working less efficiently.  And you start creating pressure on yourself on top of the pressure that already exists.   You get exhausted, make more mistakes and work even less efficiently and make even worse decisions.  React, react, react.

My advice is to stick to your rhythm and maybe even increase it.  Go for more runs, take longer prayer or meditation time. Don’t cancel your company meeting rhythm.   You need these pauses that refresh you and energize you.  These are where the answers lie.

Get back in rhythm and find the solutions and get more done. Work smarter, not harder you’ll end up going faster.