Stopping – Part I



I have re-discovered some books in my library.  

Dr. David Kundtz penned this in 1998,  Stopping--How to Be Still When You Have to Keep Going.

According to Kundtz, stopping has three levels:

Stillpoints – stopping quickly and doing nothing for just a moment

Stopovers – this level is an hour to several days. In this level, you have the feeling that you have been away and have had a mini vacation for the soul

Grinding Halts – will probably happen only happen a couple of times in most people’s lives. They are times from a week to a month – or more. Obviously, these need more planning, require a larger and deeper commitment of time and energy, and typically happen at a time of life transitions.

We have all come to a grinding halt together in the past six to seven weeks or over forty days. Hindsight, we can all appreciate Kundtz’s comment that these events need planning. Collectively, we did not have this benefit as our Spring began to unravel. 

Last month, a Harvard Business Review article by Scott Berinato (“That Discomfort You’re Feeling is Grief”), defined the discomfort as grief. Personally, this has resonated with me and has become a framework for my thinking about the next.

Dr. Kundtz noted seven gifts of stopping. There is a gift in the silence. I will share his gifts over these next few days.

For now, some questions for you to ask yourself and your teams.

In this halt, I prefer not to ask how people are doing, rather, ask some more interesting and better questions:

  • What was your favorite moment thus far today?
  • What advice would you give your 20-year old self?
  • What’s the nicest compliment you’ve ever received?
  • Is there something you need help with at this moment?
  • What was the best gift you’ve ever received?
  • What was your proudest accomplishment this week?
  • What always makes you smile?
  • What was your do-over from this week?
  • Who would you like to have dinner with tonight (could be anyone, dead or alive)?

Credit to Daphne Fecheyr for her Medium article “50 Questions to Ask Someone Instead of ‘How Are You.’”

Here’s to pondering our next.



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