This thought all started as I was watching the popular ABC television show "The Middle". The opening credits show a long straight road through the cornfields of the Midwest. I pause the DVR and think about what it would be like to ride down that road. The quiet, peaceful serenity. Am I rolling down the road on my Harley? Am I cruisin' down the road in my Fairlane? Or am I pedalling down with my vintage Schwinn? I wonder how it might look different at dawn or dusk, or in the middle of a moon-lit evening? What does it sound like, smell like. I just want to soak it all in. Just then, Tracy asks if I am going to push the play button.
Of course, my mind starts to wander about how this pause can help my clients and my business. My Strategic Marketing Map has been a great resource in defining a modern content driven in-bound marketing program.
What does the road look like for your business? I highly doubt it is a straight smooth highway rolling past the horizon. At times, I'm sure it's got some pot holes, treacherous turns or soft shoulders. Hopefully not all at once.
What is the vehicle you are riding in? At times I am sure it feels like a beat-up jalopy that is about to break down at any moment, and I hope it is more like a modern exotic sports car more often than not. Some cars tend to drive themselves. Ride in a swanky Cadillac and your ride is smooth no matter the quality of the road. Get in a tiny sports car and you feel every bump and pebble. Sometimes it is important to feel the bumps, and other times they distract you from what is important. It's best to know when you need a certain vehicle.
Who is with on this trip? Is your team comprised of great travel companions? The explorer, navigator, sergeant, and mechanic. We need each of these characters to have a fulfilling trip. The Explorer plots an uncharted course to find new opportunities. The Navigator sees what is immediately up ahead and can help smooth the turns. The Sergeant manages the activities to stay on course. And, the Mechanic is there to solve any problems that may arise.
How are you experiencing this expedition? Are you able to take time to reflect on its grandeur? Is the journey happening so fast that you can't see what's around the next turn, or see the forest through the trees? When you are able to pause and reflect, you have moved from reactionary mode to proactive mode, which allows you to work smarter rather than harder.
I found in a recent vacation that my attitude is different on my way to our vacation as on the way home. Not better or worse, just different. On the way TO my vacation spot, the uncertainty is exhilarating, challenging and calming. Not knowing exactly what the amenities will be like, or the availability of activities is scary for someone who likes to be in control. On the way HOME, my mind is clear from the time away and I can think differently to help solve any problems that come about.
So now, the show is about half over and the dialog is a calming drone with occasional bursts of laughter.
I'd sure like to know how you take pause in your hectic life. Share your thoughts below, and let's start a refreshing dialog.