Rushing the Weeks, Not Enjoying the Minutes


Rushing the Weeks, Not Enjoying the Minutes

Before the invention of Twitter and the infamous hashtag (#), we would hear somewhat disgruntled employees refer to Wednesdays as “Hump Day,” and there were the happy cries of TGIF or “Thank God it’s Friday.” Now, with Twitter we also have #Motivational Monday, #ThoughfulTuesday and indeed a new hashtag for every day of the week.

It is amusing on one hand and from the perspective of a business coach such as myself it is also somewhat distressing. Many employees and their executive leaders fixate on making it through the week. Rather than enjoying the minutes that make up that week.

First to Admit
As we hear many “tales of woe” from executive leaders at VIM Executive Coaching about excruciating meetings, long and boring meetings, pointless meetings and the like, we do understand wanting to forget about those experiences. We also understand when people want to push through a boring meeting or conference and make it to lunch!

However, I would submit that the “meeting problem” is more a challenge with organizational structure, procedures and policies than personnel. What I am talking about is when an executive and her or his staff, mark each week as a chore, and getting from the “opening bell” on Monday to the turning off of lights on a Friday as a battle that one must slog through and endure.

Obviously, when people are that unhappy, truly that unhappy, changes must be made. In my experience, when the “act” of working as a manager becomes so dreadful, then it is almost always due to a lack of authenticity, compassion and engagement, not because of the company or the work.

I’ll bet you didn’t see that coming!

Our difficult days
What makes most of our days as executive leaders so difficult are dealing with difficult people or painful situations. We dread having to face employees who are miserable or who are in conflict with others. We seem to lose ourselves in situations that have become nearly impossible to navigate. “Motivational Mondays” seem to become Miserable Mondays; followed by “Terrible Tuesdays,” and “Woeful Wednesdays” and on and on.

When we make it “just” through enough of the difficult days, week in and week out, we find ourselves looking into mirrors and asking ourselves where the time has gone. Indeed, where our work lives have gone. It can be a sad and rude awakening.

The antidote to being miserable in our workplaces, to keep ourselves from marking each minute as a task, is to become more authentic, and truer to ourselves. To be more authentic calls upon us to respond to workplace challenges rather than react to them.

In the process of being more compassionate, we also learn to be as empathetic toward ourselves as we are to others. To be more engaging, we need to re-learn the art of reconnection and of being a part of a greater solution than to shy away from

The more we are a part of our workplaces and of trying to compassionately help others ro achieve their potentials, the more the minutes become more meaningful and filled with possibilities.

There are many ways toward reaching the goals of greater authenticity and compassion, but in our view at VIM Executive Coaching, it all begins with mindfulness. The more mindful we are of what is going on around us, the more each moment of our workday can be savored and examined.

In our opinion, mindfulness offers a beautiful consistency. We are the same person to those higher and lower, we solve problems with consistency and we are able to approach each day with an open-mindedness and willingness to examine each challenge anew.

In being mindful we become more authentic. We may not always be able to speed up a boring and unnecessary meeting but if we are compassionate we will at least empathize with our co-workers who struggle through the same experience! Savor each minute no matter the day. It will not come around again.

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