‘Work conquers all’, or ‘steady work overcomes all things’ Virgil dixit. For many, the time of post-break is approaching, if not already landed. Back to it. Some more tanned than others.
I have a lot of respect for people who can compartmentalize ‘work’ and ‘break’, which is not the same as the work-life balance, that assumes that work is not life.
Bertrand Russell said that “one of the symptoms of approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one’s work is terribly important, and that to take a holiday would bring all kinds of disaster”. General Charles De Gaulle said that ‘cemeteries are full of indispensable people’.
Most of my clients today (but not all) do not sit in such a moral indispensable place. And take summer holidays. And in those non EU countries with less holidays, people enjoy that the others are on holiday. It’s a kind of holiday,
In many companies, the rituals of ‘Quarter 4’ are approaching. For example budget planning and approval and conference season.
You can approach the ‘quarter in front’ as an extrapolation of the previous months of perhaps injecting a bit of reflection. There is plenty of data that suggests that how you start your morning shapes the rest of the day. Starting with a very early frenzy of solving dramatic problems is not a very good idea, and you don’t need a Cognitive Neuroscientist to tell you. The mind is a formidable framing machinery. If it decides that it’s about pain, difficulties and heroic management, that is what you will get for the rest of the day, no matter what.
If the consequences of a bad framing were only private, that will be one thing. But if you lead others, or work with others (so everybody but hermits), the way you frame the ‘post-break’ has big consequences.
Be invitational. This always win.
Let’s finish this thing that we left in the air, let’s do it fast.
Join me/us to address that hanging issue that we have been postponing
Let’s make a firm decision on that one
Let’s agree what we want to see by Christmas.
Now that we are fresh, let’s tackle that assignment.
Let’s treat this as Day one, shall we?
Most sensible people respond well to invitations, If your frame is a positive invitation, that positivity will stay.
OK, not to work. It’s Day One.