The Steak Strategy for Getting Better Results in Everything You Do
Did you know the secret to a juicy steak is to let it rest? Before I knew this, I would cut into my steak immediately, and while it was okay, it was nowhere near as good as when I let it rest for several minutes. The point of letting the steak rest is to let it redistribute the juices inside, resulting in a juicier steak.
In fact, it doesn't just apply to steaks -resting makes any form of thick meat (chicken, turkey, duck) you cook at high temperatures significantly juicier and tastier.
Photo by Edson Saldaña on Unsplash
The steak strategy for your life - examples from my life
I know this sounds weird, but I thought about how to apply the strategy to different situations I was facing in life. And I found that letting things 'rest' helped me significantly. For example:
- I would write up incredibly long and detailed emails to clients quickly, and then I would turn to another task and then go back to my email. I always found, with the brief break, things I missed or phrases I could make clearer.
- Many of my blog posts are written, edited, and published all in one sitting. But I recently learned that many of the great bloggers batch activities: they do all of their writing on one day, all of their editing on another day, and then pitch to publications and choose images on yet another day. Aside from letting your blog posts 'rest', you tap into a single focus and mental state when you are writing, while you have a different focus and mental state when you are editing, so it makes sense to do this to take advantage of your mental state.
- I will sometimes get into heated arguments with colleagues or friends. At the moment, I resist the urge to say something that I could never take back, instead opting to walk away and clear my head. I find the 'rest' here helps me think through things objectively.
- My Mom used to tell me, whenever I had a bad or tiring day or if I was feeling sick, to take a shower. It seemed like strange advice, but I always (even now) find taking a shower to be a refreshing experience. It cleanses my body and my mind.
How you can use the steak strategy - lessons learned
- There are some lessons I have learned from applying the 'steak' strategy in my life:
First, if you are applying it to work or a project, to get the draft out of your head and onto paper or the computer. I find I can't let things 'rest' until I have it out. Sometimes, I will let it stew in my head and let it rest that way, but I find the output significantly better when I can see it and it is out of my mind.
- If you don't have the time to let things 'rest', you don't have the luxury of using this strategy - sorry. If you have an email, you need to send to your customer in an hour, and you take one hour to write the email, well you don't really have the time to let your email 'rest' so your brainy juices can start flowing. The steak strategy works best when you have ample time to let things rest (typically an hour or more).
- Partly because I'm a workaholic, I think about work all the time. It isn't healthy I know, but it helps me think through problems and plan for situations at work. I don't think you need to think about whatever you are working on, but it needs to be floating around in your head for you to have some interesting insights.