There was a time in my life when I was getting up before the sun was coming up and going to bed well after it went down.
When I was in my twenties, it was as if I had a never-ending supply of energy. I ran. I travelled everywhere. I dated everyone. I was social, I was ambitious and I had nice shoes.
Long story short, I switched industries, switched countries and fell in love with a man who is the epitome of stability. I slowed down.
I didn’t have all the projects and the noise. I had time in the morning to meditate and to consider my thoughts before they came barreling out of me.
At first, this terrified the heck out of me.
As a yoga and meditation teacher, I was supposed to be good at dealing with space. Yet I kept railing against it. I would find a pocket of time and fill it. Sometimes I would fill it with an ambitious recipe. I would study a language or a science. I would apply for jobs.
Finally, I realized that a lot of this was driven from an inside place that wanted to prove that I was worthy.
Doing a little less is possible in many of our lives but we often choose busyness — it is a national pastime.
Here are some things I learned when I took some things off my plate that may encourage you, too, to slow down:
1) You are enough.
What you have accomplished, and the relationships you have, and the body you maintain are all things to be proud of. However, you are more than that.
There is a part of you that is settled and peaceful, even if you don’t accomplish anything substantial enough to constitute a hashtag.
2) Take a breath and celebrate.
How often have you run a race to sign up for the next one because you are worried you will no longer be motivated? Or received a promotion to sigh about the extra hours expected of you?
Rather than moving forward in your head to the next thing, if something good happens, you have permission to take some time off to revel in it. Who did this awesome thing? You.
3) Distraction is the enemy of mindfulness.