Slow Down, You Move Too Fast

Life is better when you move at a slower, more relaxed pace.

• Is food better if you cram it down your throat or if you take time to appreciate the flavor and savor every bite?

• Do you enjoy a book more if you speed-read it or if you get lost in its pages?

• Is the quality of your work better when you are multitasking or when you focus on one thing at a time?

• Are your relationships more satisfying if you take the time to connect and really listen or when you are interrupted by emails and texts?

Faster is not always better.

There are psychological and physical consequences to our constantly accelerating world and selves. The constant state of rushing around activates a part of our central nervous system known as the sympathetic nervous system. This part of the central nervous system helps us in our “fight or flight” response and helps us to survive crisis situations. The problem is that constantly living in this state upsets the balance of the brain and nervous system and can lead to many problems including anxiety, depression, insomnia, and sexual and immune system dysfunction. Stress, by its very nature affects our bodies. An isolated event, such as slamming on the brakes to avoid a fender bender, can affect the body for an additional 6 hours after the event. The opposite of the sympathetic nervous system is the parasympathetic nervous system. The parasympathetic system activates during relaxing activities. When this system is activated, the body can begin to repair the damaging impact of being in overdrive. It is important to remember that a frantic pace can take a toll on your health.

In addition, rushing produces errors. It is distracting to go from one thing to the next. Rushing also creates too much noise in our heads, which interferes with creativity and profound thinking. Moving too fast doesn’t allow us to notice what we have and appreciate things.

Slowing down is a conscious choice, and it is not always an easy one.

We need to slow down for our own well being, so our lives are more than just a schedule to keep, constant to-do lists and a feeling of running fast just to stay behind!

Try These Things Out!

Practice disconnecting. Have time when you turn off your devices and are truly connected.

Stop, look and listen. Experience the sights and sounds along the way. Notice what others may miss.

Realize that if it doesn’t get done, it is okay. There is always tomorrow. Do a little less. Focus on the quality of each task not the quantity of tasks. Slow and steady wins the race!

  1. Do what is the most important. Cut back on commitments and keep the ones that you do make.

Allow enough time to accomplish things. Wake up a bit earlier. Get ready before you wake the children. You will be calmer and have more patience.

Drive slower. You will notice your surroundings and appreciate nature more. You will also have less road rage and therefore less stress. Not to mention it is safer and more energy efficient!

Find your pleasure. Set time aside to relax and focus on pleasure. Relaxation is only enjoyable if we allow ourselves to slow down and give ourselves permission to enjoy it.

Focus on people. Be present in your relationships. At the end of the day, it is the people in your life that matter.

  1. When you find yourself speeding up and stressing out, pause and take a deep breath. It will slow you down.

Life Is Better When Unrushed!