This is an article from The Age Saturday 13 May,2016 demonstrarting to me that the wisdom of politicians is often expressed too late. This is an expression of the power of meditation in life.

Gillard: ‘I should have gone into’ cone of silence more’ by Samantha Lane

With her time over, Julia Gillard says she would – and should – have retreated more often during her prime­ ministership to a self-styled “cone of silence” to reinforce her true thoughts and aims.

Ms Gillard shared candid reflections at a women’s leadership forum luncheon for the Layne Beachley Aim for the Stars Foundation, of which she is pat­ron. Ms Gillard, now chairwoman of the Global Partnership for Education, told the Melbourne audience that three leadership lessons had crystallised for her during her short-lived time as prime minister: the importance of hav­ing a sense of purpose, knowing the difference between what she termed “the urgent and the important” and nurturing a very strong sense of self. “It is vital to know what you are trying to achieve. To have that incred­ibly, clearly, defined in your mind; to know what you want your life to be about,” she said in a 20-minute speech.

On the challenges that incessant communication and media streams pose to anyone, let alone a pioneer prime minister, Ms Gillard said: “Never before in human history has the urgent been so privileged for our attention. It beeps and buzzes and pings at you 24 hours a day, seven days a week, always grasping for your attention.

“So it’s harder than it’s ever been to carve out the thinking time, the quiet time, the unplugged time, to work out what is important, rather than just at­tending to the urgent.

“When I was prime minister I sought to do that. I would carve out time for thinking by myself, or with the best of my colleagues or external advisers. I would announce to my office that I was going into the ‘cone of silence’ because every high-functioning

Julia Gillard reflects on her career.

team needs to use words from Get Smart periodically,” Ms Gillard, accompanied by partner Tim Mathieson at the lunch, recalled laughingly.

“Looking back on it now, even though I did carve out that time, I didn’t do it enough, I should have done it more. And I strongly recommend to you that in a world that is so pressurised you do find that clear time to think and reflect, to talk to the best of your advisers. It will help steady you. It will help you stay on course. It will help you see around the corners and work out what is going to come at you in the future. ” And third I would say nurture a very strong sense of self”.

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