As I was driving on the way to and from Albany on the weekend, I noticed some very wise and poignant signs alongside the road:n”Have you slowed down yet?” On the obvious level, there was the the reminder to ease the foot off the accelerator and reduce speed before coming into a town.
Hopefully drivers did this! On another level, it was a beautiful reminder to ‘slow down’ in life. It is the life-lesson that I’ve had the privilege of learning and sharing with many others over the years. And being reminded like this still serves me well! Sometimes students say to me that they’re scared of slowing down, of being calmer for fear of missing-out on life or missing the energy of excitement that comes to the body/mind when being busy. To this, I offer the following.
Slowing down doesn’t mean losing yourself. And it doesn’t mean you’ll miss out on life. In fact, quite the opposite. Slowing down allows us to connect with ourselves, to enjoy who we are on the inside and to hear our own creative wisdom. Having checked-in with ourselves first, we are better able to enjoy all that life offers us. We are better able to fully participate in all the liaisons and opportunities before us, with a sense of centredness and genuine appreciation. And maybe in the process of slowing down, we might even realise that our needs change.
That we don’t actually have the need (or desire) to ‘keep-up-the-pace’ just because everyone else is. In this way, slowing down supports us to make empowered and wise decisions in every aspect of our life. In my life, when I’m in a flurry of activity, often doing different tasks and roles at Momentum, I remember what comes from slowing down. And I know that life wouldn’t be the same inspirational and amazing journey if I didn’t. “If you’re having difficulty coming up with new ideas, then slow down. For me, slowing down has been a tremendous source of creativity. It has allowed me to open up — to know that there’s life under the earth and that I have to let it come through me in a new way. Creativity exists in the present moment. You can’t find it anywhere else.” ~ Natalie Goldberg, author and speaker