LET'S TAKE IT SLOW. --- 4 KEY BENEFITS TO SLOWING DOWN
Lately, I have had a keen awareness on the power of slowing down. Rushing around and mastering the art of multi-tasking never truly allows us joy and fulfillment. For me, the answer is always to slow down. Stay mindful. Be present. When anxiety or fear creeps up, just taking a moment to stop and breathe can have profound benefit.
Living in NYC, working in the fashion world and especially doing PR was a super fast paced existence for many years. I remember years ago my close friend, a high school teacher, came to visit me at my office during fashion week. She just stared at me in amazement how I was handling multiple calls, countless emails flooding in and a large staff asking questions. She thought I was insane. At the time, I was proud of myself for mastering the art of multi-tasking pretty well. Now, I have come to realize that without keen focus and sufficient time to organize and delegate, balls are dropped, mistakes happen, someone's not happy and guess what? You are stressed the hell out!
Ever rush to send an email and then wish desperately that you never heard that “swoosh” sent sound? This is when slowing down really does come in handy. I had a client share with me that she was so angry she sent a rude, accusatory email to a huge client, thinking that she would have the upper hand after doing so. As soon as she clicked send, she knew it was a mistake. At a business dinner when she finally met this client in person, she felt even worse for her negative email discovering it was based on misunderstanding and cultural differences. Karma ensued and despite a successful completion of the project, their final payment was withheld, for an unreasonable amount of time, resulting in struggle and stress.
How can slowing down be of benefit? She discovered it's possible to draft an email and then pause before sending, stop and go for a walk, conduct research before false accusations, relax and tap into the wisdom of intuition.
FOUR KEY BENEFITS TO SLOWING DOWN
FOCUS ON THE TASK AT HAND
In the past I myself have been falsely labeled “slow” by those that couldn't get the results they want from their own work. One colleague was in shock after reflecting what I achieved in a short amount of time by focusing on the task at hand, one thing at a time. The pressure was on, but I made it happen. After the event she said, “Hope, you really did prove that slow and steady wins the race.” Really? I was reminded that for some, slowing down is a sign of weakness, of inefficiency. I'm not saying exist at a snails pace, but being present and focusing with attention to detail often leads to positive results. Deadlines are real and swift competence is vital at times, yet there is always a balance and it can be achieved with dedication. But how? Mindfulness is the way.
2. CHILL WITH THE PEOPLE PLEASING AND FEELING RUSHED TO REPLY
Ever get asked a challenging question and felt the pressure to answer right away when you weren't clear on your reply? Ever agree to something, volunteer for a task or mention words you would've never said if you took a moment to think about it? I have rushed into answering so many times, it's insane. This has resulted in shifts in relationships, degrading integrity, bad interviews, regrets and so on. I often remind myself to take my own advice. Rather than an automatic “yes” that I am ashamed of admitting I used to say too often, I found a fantastic rebuttal that has proved to work... a pause or “I'll get back to you” or “Let me think about it.” These simple phrases have opened up my world.
3. ANY CHANCE YOU GET, ENJOY THE SCENERY
The mindfulness practice of walking meditation can offer much benefit to our busy day. Normally walking meditation requires you to walk extra slowly, as if you are taking a step with each breath. You can bring your awareness to your feet touching the earth with each step, you can notice the nature around you and enjoy it's beauty. All this can actually take place during your busy days, even in the urban jungles. I do this everyday in NYC...walking at a normal pace, I simply bring my consciousness to each step, observing the sky, trees, birds, whatever slice of nature resonates with me. Even my clients who knew nothing about this practice, find joy and sense of peace when they mindfully walk about town.
4. TIME FOR A TECH DETOX
Observe the world around you. Remember those olden days when we actually looked at each other and talked? Where we had conversations on the phone to get to know a love interest? Earth to singles out there...you can not find love via text! Tips for your Tech-Detox: a) Try turning of devices earlier than normal in the evenings. b) Put your phone away when you travel & observe your surroundings c) Turn your cell off when out to dinner or meet with friends c) Refrain from observing or posting on social media for one day if you are addicted. d) Make Sunday not only your day of rest, but a smartphone free day.
If you can relate, join me in carving out time to take back your life and precious time. Slow down and be selective! Share with me your insights on the art of slowing down in the comments below. Love to hear what you have to say. If you like it, share it.
As Transformational Coach+ Fashion Consultant my innate passion and intuitive talents involve supporting creatives and changemakers on their own personal path towards self-empowerment, aiding in the rediscovery process of one's authentic self and standing as support to achieve goal and make major shifts. Relationships and career transitions are my specialties. Click here to learn more about working with me. Nurturing my "passion for fashion," I help mamas rediscover their own personal "fly" with my “Style Rejuvenation” program. Just the act of sending some love to my clients' personal style offers great benefit...joy, fun, confidence, power etc. I've been bestowed the honor of being called a “catalyst for change."