Second Maxim

My second maxim is: “Move and act slowly, methodically.”

This maxim is also a reminder, in a somewhat similar vein as the first maxim.  The difference here is that the first maxim is targeted at taking control over your good/bad emotions, whereas this one is targeted at taking more careful control over your physical actions.  Some ways to apply this maxim would be as follows:

  • Ensure that when you’re having a conversation, you’re taking the time to listen to the other person and understand what they are saying.  Pay attention to both their words and their body language.  Don’t immediately jump in with a similar story just because you’ve got one.
  • Before leaving a location, take time to evaluate whether or not you’ve accomplished what you wanted, and that you’ve got everything you need (examples being car keys, wallet, phone, etc.).  A few extra minutes can save you a lot of hassle.
  • Before sending emotionally-charged messages, making big purchases, etc. take some time to evaluate whether there’s a strong possibility that you’ll regret the decision.  Wait until you’re in a more clear, calm state of mind before acting.
  • In general, take more time to evaluate your surroundings.  Some things like driving to work become so repetitive that you effectively “zone out” and miss important details.  Each day begins to blend with the next.  Try to note something new on your driving route each day, or even better – try a different route altogether!
  • When you find yourself in a sudden high-stress situation (e.g.: you’ve just shattered a plate/cup, you’ve witnessed or been involved in a car accident, the fire alarm goes off, etc.), take some time to breathe and evaluate the situation before acting.  Note that I’m not encouraging inaction here, but rather just more thoughtful action and less reactionary action.

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