November 6, 2018 Yscouts

The Right Ritual

Picture this – it’s Tuesday morning around 9:15am, we’re all on our 2nd (…or 3rd) cup of coffee and we’re heading into our weekly leadership meeting. Yesterday (Monday) was one of those days where it feels as if 13 hours was spent catching up, reviewing last week’s work and tackling the necessary evils of housekeeping issues.

We all made it to the meeting on time, however it’s safe to say our undivided attention was largely absent. Everyone had reviewed the agenda, our list of “to-do’s” from the last week’s meeting, along with the list of fresh issues to tackle. We are well aware of the work ahead of us and it’s time to get started. However, not a single one of us was truly present or engaged.

That’s when we did what we’ve always done. We pause. We take a collective deep breath and each one of us shares one personal accomplishment and one professional from the last week. This ritual does two things: First, it creates a break in time and space between whatever was going on before the meeting, and what needs to be accomplished in the time ahead. Second, it helps us work together more effectively from a neuroscience perspective. Stories of accomplishment can cause the release of dopamine and oxytocin into our systems. Elevated levels of oxytocin actually make us more generous and trusting, while dopamine helps drive focus, motivation and memory. In general, we feel more relaxed, connected and collaborative before jumping into problem solving and decision making.

This is a ritual that works well for us to help us focus, connect and work together. Do you do something similar? What are some of the rituals that you’ve found help teams work together or communication more effectively?

 
Daniel Cheetham

Daniel takes pride in providing value through building honest, authentic relationships and digging in deep to understand and address the needs of a business. He is proud to work with the Y Scouts team and contribute to the continued success of our clients.


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