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Tuesday / August 16.
HomemilastwordThe Last word: In Praise of the Slow Re-Start

The Last word: In Praise of the Slow Re-Start

We all tend to take a little while to wind into the year. That’s the great thing about January. We bounce into work, grab a coffee then gaze into space in total disbelief that the holidays are already behind us.

We look at our new Fitbit (the most popular adult present of last year…yes, I bought one for my brother and he bought his wife a blender…) and discover that we’re already behind in our steps for the year.

New Year’s resolutions are made to be broken. I’ve seen statistics that claim that while 75 per cent of people maintain their resolution in the first week, only about 8 per cent actually achieve the goal set in that first flush of January (don’t you feel better now?!).

Perhaps it’s because resolutions – New Year or otherwise – are usually broadbrush statements, like “lose weight” or “get organised”. Much better to set definite targets: “I’ll set up an automatic direct deposit from my pay to a savings account to save for that dream holiday to Venice”.

…if your good intentions have already hit a speed bump it may not be time to give up… just yet, but rather to ‘re-start’, to put in place a slow re-start!

While we’d all like to maintain our momentum – if your good intentions for 2015 have already hit a speed bump it may not be time to give up just yet… but rather to ‘re-start’, to put in place a slow re-start!

A slow re-start provides the opportunity to re-examine our goals and either refine or recommit to them. Are they written down? Are they realistic? Achievable? Are they still lofty end goals of the “get fit” variety? If they
haven’t been broken down into small, achievable steps yet, a slow re-start allows time to do that.

A slow re-start exposes the faults in our attitudes and approaches; our practices and procedure. What was it that derailed our plans? Is the ‘speed bump’ something that is liable to repeat itself ? If so, what changes – or minor tweaks – can we make to better ensure success next time?

It gives us an opportunity to reconnect with people, with our team – whether that team is made up of family members, friends, colleagues or staff. When we work through issues with others, we often discover
different perspectives that help us succeed.

It also gives us time to develop leadership skills… an opportunity for us to take charge, to lead the way, and encourage others to get on board, or catch up.

Perhaps most importantly of all, a slow re-start builds resilience. In life, as in business, it’s our ability to persevere, to get up after a fall or disappointment that is the key to success.

Slow re-starts are great – just so long as we recognise that they’re an opportunity to acclimatise, rather than an excuse to bail.

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