I just came back from a mid-day walk to the mechanics to pick up my car. I was walking quickly (as I often do!), when halfway there I realized how hot it was and had to slow down. To be honest, the last thing I wanted to do was slow down (my mind protested immediately with but I have SO much to do!), but slowing down was really necessary unless I wanted to pass out on the sidewalk.
Once I slowed down, I was able to notice the beautiful blue color of the sky and take a deep breath – and honestly, I only got there 3 minutes slower than at my previous pace (and I was calmer!), so it wasn’t a huge deal after all. But it felt like one, and that got me thinking.
I find that a lot of my clients have some resistance to the idea of slowing down – it feels like giving up, or it feels too slow, kicks up anxiety, or feels stuck in some way. How do you feel about the idea of slowing down? Notice what comes up in your uncensored thoughts or any reactions/sensations in your body. Try not to judge them, just notice them – we internalize a lot of messages about slowing down as we grow up and as we make our way through the world as adults. Be curious about what slowing down means for you.
Do you only slow down after you skid to a stop (i.e. get sick or burnt out)? Imagine what it would be like to move at a slower pace in general, taking a little bit of time every day to just pause and breathe. The slowing down we do because of sickness or burnout is valuable, of course, but imagine slowing down consistently so maybe burnout could be a bit less in your face (or gone?).
What would it be like to gracefully slow down, just a little bit, every day? To breathe when you wake up or go to bed. To put your phone on airplane mode as you ride the subway. To listen to slow music. To walk down the street slowly (or at a pace one notch below hustling). To eat slowly and really taste your food (what did you eat for your most recent meal?).
I invite you to take 3 minutes and listen to the below piece of music – one of my recent favorites and a good example of slow(er) music. Notice your breath as you listen, and just allow the music to wash over you.
If slowing down feels like a challenging area where you’d like some creative, nurturing support, please reach out today to schedule your free 20 minute phone consultation.