Scheduling can help you be more present. In this day and age, every where you turn – whether you have the TV on or are reading a magazine headline in the checkout line or see a news story on your phone – you’re reading how we’re less and less engaged with each other.
The decrease in our abilities to be present with each other is a sad fact, yet I believe we can actually use technology to help ourselves shore up the weaknesses we might have related to engaging with others. Being present doesn’t come easily for many of us, myself included. But the heart of good leadership is improving our ability to be present with others.The heart of good leadership is improving our ability to be present with others. Click To Tweet
I’d like to start with a coaching question then dive into a personal story.
Which tasks can you block out a little time for in the future to ensure you remain present with those you’re with today?
Once I was smack dab in the middle of a rousing card game with my family after dinner. In between rounds, my daughter was shuffling the cards to deal them, and suddenly some dust on the piece of furniture behind her caught my eye.
Not really alarming? Maybe not to you, but I am an activator who isn’t the best at focusing. So it’s easy for me to spot something that needs to be done and abandon what I was currently doing to go handle the new task.
But something beautiful happened. I fought the impulse to get up and make a quick cleaning swipe on the cabinet and chose instead to remain present in the game with my loved ones. Do you know why this happened?
I remembered I’d already blocked out a few minutes the next afternoon to handle that chore.
When the reminder chimed on my phone 16 hours later to do a quick 5 minute dusting of our furniture, I felt so happy to have not missed out on the previous evening’s family time.Which tasks can you block out time for in the future to ensure you remain present with those you're with today?Click To Tweet
Too often we jump to handle something we notice needs to be done and we become the servant to our homes or offices. But we can turn this approach to things on its head by making those tasks fit into our schedules so they don’t take over precious family and rest time.
I’m worried I’ve oversimplified what’s actually a very powerful experience. As a leader at work and in your home, I don’t want you to miss this, friend.
I didn’t leave our family’s game and inadvertently communicate that I value a clean home more than family time…all because I’d already set aside time to handle the dusting and could give my complete focus and attention to my family.
I’ll ask you again: Which tasks can you block out a little time for in the future to ensure you remain present with those you’re with today?
Challenge: The next time you are tempted to step away from a moment where you have the opportunity to connect with another, identify the task that nearly mastered you. The next time you can get to your phone or computer, identify the best time to handle that regularly. This will free up your mind to relax and focus on the person or people you’re with in the future.