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
This week (and in fact the next few weeks) you’ll get more done by going slow.
By focusing on just one thing at a time.
Which might seem counter-intuitive. Isn’t it better to go full-tilt? Isn’t it better to rush right in? Isn’t it better to hustle?
One of the worst diseases I suffer from is impatience. Especially in regard to my health. I’ve had so many years of being sub-optimal that any time I have the smallest amount of extra energy I want to race around like a mad thing so I don’t miss out on making the most of feeling good. But experience has taught me something very valuable. You get there faster by going slow. Not only that, but you arrive with more juice left in the tank.
Slow is good for ideas. For creative acts and making things. Slow is all about stopping, unwinding, relaxing, getting back into flow. Slow makes more sense for connecting into inspiration and inner wisdom than that rush-rush energy we tell ourselves will get things done.
Slow is good for health. When we go slow we de-stress, we can catch up on sleep, sunshine and seasons. Slow makes better sense for weight loss, for healing, for any kind of transformation. Yes it takes longer, but the results are usually much more lasting.
Slow is good for relationships too. Slow allows us to have time together, to create depth in relationships. Slow helps us to be ok with the spaces as we lose the need to fill every moment with busy-ness. It’s in the spaces that the magic often happens.
Slow is good for the soul; for spiritual connection, reflection, for listening and receiving. We finally get to hear our own heartbeat, and the heartbeat of the earth. We get to hear the stardust and the windsong of the heavens.
How can you make a pocket of slow in your current bubble of craziness? I know slow won’t feel natural if you’ve been racing through life like some sort of human targeted-missile. And sometimes we need to respond to life with speed. But if all you’re doing is busy, you know it’s going to catch up with you in the end, and then the Universe might just tip you into slow by a mechanism not of your own choosing.
When you first allow the energy of slow into your life, a couple of things can happen. You might panic. The weight of overwhelm that we avoided by running to stay ahead of things might come crashing down. Yes, that sucks. But ultimately its also good to recognise how insane life has become and how much you need to simplify and let go of this level of complexity and constant demand.
You might grind to a halt altogether. So many of my students, when I take them away on retreats to learn to meditate or channel, fall asleep, or zone out and can’t remember what I was talking about when we go into those quiet, reflective or meditative spaces. Their bodies need rest first – before anything else can happen. Rest and sleep are critical functions that we’ve somehow told ourselves are okay to short-cut. When we slow down, usually one of the first things we need to do is top the sleep tank back up.
Something else kind of weird happens when we give ourselves permission to slow down. As our batteries charge back up, as we get to a place of equilibrium, we find we have MORE energy, and we get more done, better, in less time. Going slow actually restores productivity – in a lasting and sustainable way.
So, if going fast isn’t working for you, try slow. It’ll get you there in the end. In one piece and able to enjoy the journey as well as the destination.
All my love, Nicole xx