We live fast-paced lives. It’s become sort of a cliché to say the modern world is moving too fast, and that it should change. The modern world is how it is, but we can choose how we interact with it, when to jump on, and when to hop off for a bit.
Research shouts about the health benefits of making time in your day for exercise, yoga or mindfulness. All great advice, but so often these blend into our routines – we run in the slots between meetings, steal mindful minutes from action-packed days.
Slowing down is not just about giving yourself time. It’s about giving yourself permission.
Does that sound indulgent? Lazy? Naïve? I was surprised.
Slowing down is a practical luxury – it gives you unrivalled perspective.
You get to spot things that others miss – the world around you is less blurred.
Your self-awareness improves, and your relationships follow.
You have the space to adjust your steering, and make bold choices.
You’ve got time. You choose how to use it.
(And you can always jump back up to top speed when it serves you)
The next ten minutes
Consider spending 10 minutes thinking about this question:
If I gave myself time and space to think, what could I change?
There’s something else. Recent neuroscience suggests distracting our brains engages a special type of problem solving linked to “Eureka!” moments (more on this in a future post). So if you need an excuse to unplug for an hour, it might actually solve a niggling problem more quickly than sitting in work. It might be the best way.
Coaching provides a distraction; it also offers an opportunity to slow down – quality time spent examining the outcomes of choices, the impact of decisions. A chance to steer yourself towards a future you want.
It’s there for you. Slow down, take a look.
Inspired by “Slow down (take a look)” by Sonics’ Rendezvous Band. If you want to get in touch to talk about 1970s supergroups, please do! If you’d like to discuss coaching for your life, team or organisation, I’m here for that, too.
Dr John Ankers offers down-to-earth coaching for life, business and academia. He is based in Liverpool, UK. www.johnankerscoaching.com