HACK / MAKE

A Glacial Pace

People think it’s a negative term—“a glacial pace”—like someone who moves sloth-like. But mountains were moved and valleys created at a glacial pace and we can be great forces in the world through the work that we do by considering an approach that is steady, methodical, and persistent. A glacial pace isn’t about speed but mass and enduring momentum.

I think that both you and I, as students seeking lessons on working better, do it to improve our ability to bring change to the world. Maybe it’s a change in your own life to help yourself finally feel on top of your work and be able to sleep a full night without waking up stressed for the first time in years. Maybe it’s a desire to be better at the work you can do as a teacher so you can communicate more efficiently and reach more people in the limited time you have. To give people new knowledge, tools, perspective and power—to change things—is why we look to master tools and try to better understand the scaffolding we have available to us.

But we need to do our work in a way that can be lasting. Our approach must help us maintain a desire and excitement for the change we want to make. Consider the pace you maintain in your projects so that you can endure just as the output of our work will endure.

Working at a glacial pace means that you apply yourself with an understanding of the long haul of change you want to introduce. By playing the long game, even when that time period is relative, you buy yourself the opportunity to gain perspective and understanding about situations much better than the people around you. For example: taking a day to compose thoughts and react accordingly when you need to put out a fire for your team even though everyone else reacts immediately and emotionally. Though some people will feel like it’s taking forever for your response, that appropriate cadence will set you apart from your coworkers and give you the time to act deliberately and intentionally.

Pace yourself. Because you have a lot of world changing left in you.

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