I'm working on clearing out distractions when I'm with someone. Doing stuff like cleaning off my desk and checking through notes from previous meetings when I sit down with staff members. Following the conversation wherever it leads instead of trying to drive it. Returning calls right away instead of avoiding the phone like I usually do. Not worrying about whether I'm being boring or stupid. Just not overthinking things.
And I'm not allowed to take my Blackberry to meetings anymore. Or if I have to take it, I'm not allowed to do anything but see if I've gotten an urgent email from someone on my staff (no answering emails) or check my calendar for schedule conflicts.
It's stuff I learned in Second City boot camp from Michael Gellman—focus out instead of in. Basic stuff, like listen instead of planning, focus on your partner. It seems like this should be simple, but I'm working against lazy habits and freaky little insecurities. Half of it is just reminding myself to do it...and really, it's not that hard.
Speaking of letting go...I have never been more done with talking about something than I am with the discussion about unsolicited feedback. OK, possibly an argument with my friend Brad in 6th grade about who was more powerful, Wonder Woman (his vote) or Chewbacca (mine). But nothing since.