How different would your whole life be if only you had taken just one more minute at some point earlier on? How much more fruitful would your career be had you only listened to that nagging whisper, that one unexpected word, when a crisis was unfolding?
If you find yourself dealing with a particularly toxic situation, where your clients are in crisis and crazed with fear, it’s a good time to tune into your place of calm. Take a breath and ask for a single minute. You may be surprised how a moment of silence will free you towards finding the perfect problem-of-the-day solution. At the very least you’ll discover the issue is much simpler than you believed. Above all, it will protect you throughout the decision-making process. Embracing the courage to ask for it will be a gift to yourself.
Revise your approach: It only takes a minute to see that your client needs a little reassurance. Grabbing that minute will protect you against being subjective or judgmental, impulsive or narcissistic. It is vital when dealing with a lack of boundaries to keep your 1-minute check-in at hand. A minute might be all you need to help you restructure a client’s world of problems.
Even if your mind is brimming with nothing but cold silence, accessing that clarity will take you out of paralysis and make you proactive. You may not know the right answer; more than likely, you’ll draw a blank. But the very act of listening to your intuitive prompt is such a positive step that the best course of action is made possible, even inevitable. Whatever decision you make or recommend, upon emerging, will be guided by clarity rather than a fear impulse. Conscious interpretation is a muscle, one that we can learn to flex in the clarity of a given minute.
Even if you have some experience of inner stillness through meditation or other spiritual disciplines, the application of a silent moment can only enhance your growth and grasp of your day-to-day goals. The 60-second tool is a perfect solution to gain increased awareness and inner confidence. It is an instrument that will help you to become more present in your life.
When in crisis, do the 1-Minute Drill.
Breathe deep, and relax. Take long, deep, silent breaths; inhale through your nose, fill your lungs and belly, exhale through your mouth. Start with a reasonably small number of such breaths (whatever is comfortable) but work your way up to 36. Take still more as you become proficient, and say silently to yourself, “I am worthy.” Or you could say to yourself, “I know what I’m meant to do.” This approach will help you center and put you back on the fast track in no time.
Assess whether the feeling is persistent. If it is gnawing at you, and this gut feeling involves your boss, co-workers or clients, ask yourself:
• What words or actions have triggered this discomfort?
• What pattern keeps emerging?
• In what way does the person in question either answer or evade your questions?
Pay attention to their voice. Notice if that person is reluctant to talk. The silent pauses are key indicators that something is going on.
Make no decisions from this place. If you feel uncomfortable, make a graceful exit, at least for a short while. Give yourself some time to rethink and re-check your strategy, or do some added recon on what outside factors might be affecting the situation.
Each of us has a right to take this minute, a pressure-free minute, but nobody teaches us to ask for it — we must ask ourselves for it.
“A hero is one who knows how to hang on one minute longer.” —Novalis