Innovate Your Day With 8 Minutes Of “Ready, Set, Pause”

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by Amy Jo Martin

People spend about 47% of their lives lost in thought, pondering the past and worrying about the future. Stop the cycle and get more productive and efficient by blocking out 8 minutes a day for “ready, set, pause.”

Stress, anxiety, and pressure are no longer fleeting feelings we flirt with while working on a stressful project or stuck in a traffic jam. They have become permanent fixtures in our lives. We have let them creep into our psyche and strangle our well-being. The American Medical Association purports that stress is the basic cause of more than 60 percent of all human illness and disease. They also state that stress is the number one proxy killer disease today. Whether we mean to or not, stress often dominates our thinking and decision-making process. Some may say pressure and stress are motivators. To a certain extent, yes, but at what overall cost? What is the cumulative effect of all this stress, and what is happening to us collectively as a result?

I certainly don’t have all the answers. But I know one thing. The world needs a pause, a reset. We can actually improve productivity and boost creativity. It’s as simple as implementing a new take on a familiar phrase that we all learned as children: ready, set, pause.

As founder and CEO of Digital Royalty, I am no stranger to stress, anxiety, and pressure. In fact, they are old friends of mine. One fateful day about a year ago in New York City, I was drowning in meetings. I had 15 of them back to back. Just as I was about to hit my point of over-capacity, yet another meeting popped up. It was an 8-minute meeting put on my calendar by my friend and colleague entitled, “Ready, Set, Pause.” My friend knew about my hectic day and after seeing a little window in my schedule, she encouraged me to put on my headphones and use that 8 minutes to listen to a couple of songs from a Spotify playlist we had created. It’s amazing how little things can make big changes. I took her advice and relaxed as I listened to the music. To my surprise, after the two songs were over I felt calm, energized, and ready to tackle the rest of my day. That quick pause allowed me to release the tension that had been building with each meeting and to take a hiatus from my buddies, stress and anxiety.

From that day on, an 8-minute “Ready, Set, Pause” has held a permanent spot in my daily agenda. This little trick fascinated me so much that my team and I wanted to learn more.

There’s more. Read on here: http://www.fastcompany.com/3005147/caught-stress-spiral-innovate-your-day-8-minutes-ready-set-pause

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