In a world where everything is ‘fast, fast, fast’ and ‘now, now, now’ we seem to have lost touch with the fact that fast and furious doesn’t always equal achieving your most important goals. It is easy to forget that, just because you keep pushing on with the daily grind, it doesn’t mean you are moving forward to the results you really want in your life and business.

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Why taking a step back is a great way to move forward

Why taking a step back is a great way to move forwardIn a world where everything is ‘fast, fast, fast’ and ‘now, now, now’ we seem to have lost touch with the fact that fast and furious doesn’t always equate to achieving your most important goals or being effective.

It is easy to forget that, just because you keep pushing on with the daily grind, it doesn’t mean you are moving forward to the results you really want in your life and work.

And when the brown stuff hits the fan, the ‘push through it’ mindset could actually be detrimental to your end results and health.

Sometimes the most powerful, effective and beneficial thing you can do to move forward is to take a step back.

But it feels counter intuitive, doesn’t it?

There you are, up to your neck in it – juggling your life and work to Olympic standards! Why on earth would you take a step back?

And what does taking a step back mean anyway?

Well, taking a step back means stopping what you are doing and creating some time and space to re-think and re-group away from the all the day-to-day noise and busyness of life and work.

That may mean just an hour or so here or there. It might mean stepping back for a larger chunk of time like a week or two.

For example, I always take time to step back from my business at various points throughout the year. Partially because I have designed my business to operate around the life my family and I want to live. And partially because stepping back from my business for a while brings huge benefits on so many different levels.

Examples of some of the benefits taking a step back gives:

  • chance to re-assess, review and get a clearer perspective
  •  make new (and often better) decisions
  • making sure you are on the right track to achieve your most important goals in life and work
  • re-building energy levels and motivation
  • work out changes and new action that need to happen to get better results.
  • recharging mental and physical batteries to be more effective and productive moving forward
  • come up with new ideas and find more effective solutions to problems

There are so many benefits to taking a step back, both personal and professional, that this list could go on and on.

When you give yourself permission to step back, you are opening up the door to all sorts of possibility, opportunity and creative solutions.

When you are working and living flat out all the time, you end up with a chronic case of Hamster Wheel Syndrome – peddling damn hard in your life and work but staying in the same place and never getting to where you really want to be.

So I invite you to take a look at how you can build taking a step back into part of your regular routine, because:

Sometimes the best way forward is to take a step back.

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  • Kay Heald

    Ali
    Your article is very timely with the school summer holidays approaching fast – thank you for helping me give myself permission to climb down from the hamster wheel for a little while!

  • Glad you found the post useful Kay. And you hit the nail on the head when you say it is all about giving ourselves permission to step back and know that it is adding benefit.

    Enjoy stepping back and the school holidays. Making extra time with our kids is never time wasted as they grow and change so fast.

  • Tracy

    Wow, I have been in turmoil for about 3 years!! We have seen unemployment, loss of vehicles, downturn in our business and yet today as we are in a large house with the white picket fence, we realize that we are in our 40’s and not even close to where we want to be in reaching our goals. So with many tears, we will say goodbye to our home of 10 years taking a step back to a small apartment. In the next 18 months, we will re-evaluate where we are, what are goals are and what we need to do to actually achieve them. We have three children, one grown and their own doing very well, one that is almost grown and on their way out and one finishing high school. As we step back to learn to breath again we pray and hope that God will soon show us what’s next and we hope that the road will be a lot smoother…here’s to a new book!

  • Wow Tracy, sounds like you have been navigating some challenging times. Hope this fresh start in your new place goes well for you.

  • Great advice! It is so important to just step back and take a few breaths. It can save you from so many mistakes!

  • Ali Davies

    Well said Rena. It can save many mistakes.

  • I totally agree with this. I recently took a step back and it helped me clarify things, helped me refocus. It always does, and increasingly I’m remembering that it’s ok to plan the step back and not just take it when disaster strikes. Anita

  • Delighted it worked for you Anita. Such a simple strategy but very powerful. And you are so right – it is good to proactively do this on a regular basis.