Jun 15, 2011

How to Handle Addiction to Urgency?

Are you addicted to urgency? Signs of addiction include inability to make choice or slow yourself down, feeling compelled to act, ignoring other aspects of your life, and worry/guilt about your behavior.

When we feel restless when not working, function best under pressure, work through lunch, take infrequent breaks from work, and get used to the adrenaline rush from having to meet deadlines. Do you resemble those remarks?

I have to admit sometimes I do! My boy friend is the exact opposite, nothing appears urgent to him he is just so relaxed most of the time.

How do we combat this sense of urgency? The unexpected is to be expected in every project — even in a routine, well oiled lifestyle. And when that becomes a reality, effective crisis management becomes an essential skill and important best practice.

Sometimes the key lies in reacting quickly to a crisis and contain it before it does more damage. The problem surfaces when crisis management becomes the routine rather than the exception. Are you spending more of your time putting out fires than doing your work? If so, you are managing by crisis.

When crisis management becomes ‘normal’, it can easily lead to what Stephen Covey calls “Urgency Addiction.” People that are addicted to urgency enjoy the adrenalin rush, they like stepping in and handling problems, and at times they even get rewarded for doing that! They lack the basic incentive to avoid or prevent the fires because they see a payoff every time they put one out.

Start with distinguishing between a real crisis, which is something that is genuinely unexpected and demands your immediate attention, and other lesser problems, events, or interruptions that do not qualify as a true crisis, which could have been avoided with a little aforethought.

The second key step is to recognize the trend in your lifestyle when crisis management becomes the routine rather than the exception. When you start identifying such a pattern, it’s usually pointing to a more fundamental problem that needs to be solved.

There is an old Chinese saying: “The superior doctor prevents sickness. The mediocre doctor attends to impending sickness. The inferior doctor treats sickness.”

Even without realizing it, most of the times, we’re just healing the symptoms of the latest crisis, when the key lies in curing the underlying disease and prevent it from recurring.

It’s your turn to talk now, let’s hear what you have to say:-

To your wellness!

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