The pace of life today is far too frenetic. Improvements in technology only make this situation worse. There is constant pressure on everyone in today’s workplace to focus on getting more done. This emphasis on pace comes with a price.
The faster we move, the more difficult it becomes to appreciate the big picture. Projects and the people involved in them become just another goal or object. Decisions are made as though in a vacuum.
This past week I experienced a very different pace. My family vacationed in Maine where everything we did seemed slower and more deliberate. It was a welcome respite from the normal hustle and bustle of running a small business.
Ralph Waldo Emerson is quoted as saying, “Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.”
What makes nature such a quality teacher? What lessons can we learn from her approach to pace?
- Nature is about connections. Any hike through the woods is an illustrative example of this truth. Ecosystems depend on cooperation. Plants, animals, and insects contribute to the health of the whole. When business focuses only on making the sale, without regard to the impact on customers or employees, everyone suffers.
- Nature invites communion. Standing on a Maine shoreline where thousands of cobbles are deposited and rearranged by the wind and waves cannot be described by mere words. Staring into sparkling clear lake waters defies description. Watching a seagull ride the wind currents is an amazing experience. Our workplaces need more communion and less of what we call communication.
- Nature inspires. The beauty of creation stimulates our senses. We are invited to enjoy the delightful scents and smells. Lingering is encouraged. When was the last time you were inspired at work? Do you feel cared for and loved? Is your work contributing to a better world?
My vacation reminded me how a different pace contributes to my physical, mental, and emotional health. Being in a beautiful setting where nature is front and center was a welcome change. I hope to adopt some of nature’s lessons in my business over the next months.
How will you make meaningful connections, invite deeper communion with others, and inspire those you serve?