On Pace

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about pace and how it’s an incredibly important concept to master.

We all have the power to set our own pace, but we often let outside influences persuade us to change it. I, for example, tend to walk more quickly in New York than I do in Philadelphia. This isn’t because I choose to do this, it’s because I can’t help but keep pace with the rest of the city. I think this is dangerous.

We often take on more work than we can handle, or rush ourselves through our tasks, sacrificing quality for speed. I feel like once we let outside pressures speed us up or slow us down, that’s when we start down the slippery slope to undue stress, anxiety, and general discontent with our station in life.

It’s important to keep your own pace. Of course, pushing your limits is healthy, but it’s also important to be the master of your cadence. Pay attention to your natural speed with all things and turn that balance into efficiency, creativity, and results.

Pace plays an important role in everything that we do and it’s also important to be aware of the pace of others. In sales, for example, the best way to relate to a customer is to pace the conversation. Listen to their words, the speed of them, their intonations, and match it. The closer that you can get to someone else’s pace, the better they will be able to relate to you. Really, this is just good practice for conversation. If you approach people on their level first, it sets the stage for great communal thinking.

I have to remind myself constantly to balance my pace. I often try to take on more than I should, and it can be a struggle to slow myself down. Paying attention to my natural cadence is the best thing that I can do. I know that. I’m going to do my best to remember it. I’m going to practice it until I no longer have to think about it, and keeping pace simply becomes a way that I interact with the world.

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