Watch out – neuroscience says you might be too busy to increase your performance…

We hear it all the time – “How are you?” Someone asks. Common response – ”I’m busy”. At Next Evolution Performance we always encourage people to be very careful when they answer in that way – when someone says “I’m busy” we hear “I’m unproductive”. Here’s why……..

A quick neuroscience 101……

Our pre-frontal cortex is the part of our brain used for rational thinking, cognitive thought, memory and basically the good stuff that helps us to do our jobs. It needs a certain amount of stress to get us in the optimal performance zone, but go over this level and neuroscience tells us that performance starts to decline and perceived effort levels rise. Basically it’s where you start to give more energy to being stressed than to actually getting results in the most efficient way.

This leads to a feeling or overwhelm or frustration. At this point you are more likely to be reactive rather than proactive so it becomes far more difficult to think rationally about how to achieve results with less effort. It becomes far more difficult to think strategically and creatively and often leads to thing being done the way they have always been done rather than necessarily the most efficient way.

At this stage people often start to feel defensive and so can also be less open to ideas from other people both inside and outside of their organisation.

It’s also interesting that people who are really “busy” could benefit from the help of a coach but are the ones who put off getting coaching because they are too busy. They are literally too busy to increase their performance.

Now we’re not saying that high performers are sitting around twiddling their thumbs without much on the plates – quite the contrary….. but someone with a productive mindset around having lots to do are more likely to respond with something like “I’m great thanks – lots going on and it’s all awesome stuff”.

So who are the people most likely to take their performance to new heights?

Consequently neuroscience indicates that it’s people who are already operating at their optimal stress, and not over this level who are more likely to continue to improve their performance to even greater heights.

So if you think you might be too busy to improve your performance, you might want to do something about it sooner rather than later… Contact us today.


If you’d like to find out more, join the conversation in our next open workshop.