“People don’t like to think. If one thinks, one must reach conclusions. Conclusions are not always pleasant.” ― (often attributed to) Helen Keller
In busy times, the thing we most often squeeze out of our lives is the single most essential component to effectiveness: thought. Isn’t it odd that when there is more on the line, we stumble into the bad habit of “shooting from the hip” rather than giving full and measured consideration to our responsibilities?
However, the most important time to instill the discipline of structured thought is when you are busy.
In Hero With a Thousand Faces, Joseph Campbell describes what he calls the “sacred space”. This was his term for the time and place each day in which he would immerse himself in thought, study, and experience that filled his well and allowed him to stretch his mind and spirit.
If you are busy – especially if you are busy – you must adopt the discipline of setting aside time to think, reflect on your day and your work, and to fill your mind and your soul with inspiration. More than that, it can be valuable to break out in the midst of challenging work to take a quick walk around the office, retreat to a corner, or step outside for a few minutes.