A guide on how to just STOP

I’m feeling frazzled!

At these times I run around like a headless chicken being very “busy” achieving nothing. I somehow lose my sense of prioritisation and focus on the least important things first and, of course, I’m far too “busy” for the business-critical tasks.

Know the feeling?

As an entrepreneur my productivity is linked to my income. Knowing what’s important is crucial for me to run my businesses efficiently.

At a group training session, I discovered a wonderful acronym that has proved very successful during these times — STOP. Just STOP. I love it because that’s exactly what I need to do but even more because what it represents.

S — Step back

T — Take a breath

O — Observe

P — Proceed

Isn’t that wonderful?

So let’s explore this a bit further

Take a step back and think about what’s really going in my work, in my life.

Breathe. And then breathe some more. And then… What do I see?

What will happen if I don’t react to this situation at all? What goals have I lost sight of? What am I doing that other people can help me with? Who are these other people? What can wait until tomorrow or next week? What is the most important (not urgent) thing I need to do?

Put an action plan in place. And, finally, proceed. Start again with a clear plan, that has clear priorities in place.

The wonderful thing about STOP is that I can do it in an instant; sitting in traffic and someone cuts me off by STOPPING I will respond to the situation with clear thought and intention in a calm manner not react, get furious and ruin the rest of my day.

I can STOP for 5 minutes, for an hour or even a day. Take the STOPPING time I need to kill the frazzle!

So the next time you’re having a headless chicken, losing-your-mind day… Just STOP.