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PAUSE – 12.31 – Stretching Time Through Service

Reflection: Meet Gil and Soto. They run the Breakfast Room at the Best Western Arroyo Roble in beautiful Sedona, Arizona. It’s a busy spot with travellers coming and going – solo business folks in a hurry, retired couples with all the time in the world, active families in hiking gear eager to hit the red rock country trails.

Over the years, I’ve stayed at a number of ‘breakfast included’ hotels. The quality of the food has varied, but what has been pretty consistent is the lackadaisical, ‘I’d rather be anywhere else than here’, atmosphere set by the staff who manage the service.

That’s what makes Gil and Soto stand out. In the midst of the busy morning press (greeting guests, answering questions, orienting new comers, replenishing food trays, clearing tables), they are unfailingly smiling, welcoming, and helpful.

On our last morning, I told Gil how much I appreciated the way he and Soto went about their jobs. He commented that he’d learned a thing or two over his many years in the workplace. He noted that coming to work with a smile on his face and a desire to be of service to others makes all the difference in how people respond and in the way he experiences the pressures of the work itself.

Action: There’s an old adage that notes, “Time flies when you’re having fun”. But perhaps, it’s more the case that time flies when you’re making fun for others – or even that time expands when you set out to serve.

Recent research by Mogilner, Chance and Norton revealed that one of the ways of feeling like you have more time is to actually give it away – to spend your time on others. This approach created a more expansive sense of time than any of the other options tested: spending time on oneself, wasting time, or gaining a ‘windfall’ of free time.

Apparently, when you spend time on others, you feel you have done something significant. And, the more you feel you’ve done something of value with your time, the more time you feel you have. Interesting effect!

It’s an idea that’s worth a try. Spend a bit of time catering to someone else today (with that sunny Sedona-style spirit). See how a service point of view shifts your experience of the day. If it works for Gil and Soto, it could work for us, too!


Quotes Of The Week: The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others. – Mahatma Gandhi.

Your position in life and what you do doesn’t matter as much as how you do what you do. – Elisabeth Kubler-Ross


Resource Of The Week: Interested in more insights on shifting your sense of time? Check this article:  A Counter-Intuitive Remedy To Feeling Short of Time – 10 Ways Our Minds Warp Time. See how it compares with your experience.

And, here’s a link to the research referenced in the Action section above.


Readers Write: In response to the last ezine, Inspiration For The Journey, these comments from two Pause readers.

CJ: You are so right!  It is so important to show that we ALL have to put in the effort to reach our goals and that the journey along the way is so enjoyable and rewarding. The neat thing is that the journey is ongoing as we continue to grow in our chosen endeavors.  hat is what keeps our lives so rich and exciting!

BH writes: I often share my own struggles as an early speaker when I am talking to new folks in the business or Toastmasters starting their journey. I tell them I am grateful there was no video of those early presentations and yet, at the same time, I wish I had some so they could see how nervous and stiff I was in those days – unsmiling and soooo determined.


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Life Balance, Life in General, Overload & Overwhelm, Pause E-zines, Travel

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