The pace of modern life keeps us way too busy to slow down. We can barely keep up with all that there is to do. Self care is considered indulgent and is the first thing to be eliminated when the chips are down.
The more you struggle, the more you’re stuck.
Here’s a paradox: slowing down actually creates more space. To demonstrate this let us consult the wisdom of the ‘Chinese finger trap’.
Remember the toy that tightens more around your fingers the harder you try to pull away? Its wisdom is: it’s not by struggling but by slowing down, coming closer and making space that a great deal gets freed up, and not just your fingers!
When you’re exhausted and overworked the world looks a certain way. If everything is marked “urgent” it’s hard to take time out to breathe, let alone remember the body. When you’re depleted it’s hard to feel compassion for oneself or others. It’s hard to make room for another car in traffic or to let someone go ahead in the grocery line. Restlessness, impatience, decreased creative thinking capacity are some of the other costs of stress.
Tension also wreaks havoc on a biological level. The adrenal glands and brain chemistry respond to being in a constant state of high alert. The muscles tighten, digestion is affected. It might even become hard to unwind at night as insomnia perpetuates the cycle of stress and depletion. Chronic tension and stress lower immunity and speed up the aging process. When you live immersed in tension it’s very hard to see the forest for the trees. How do you break that spell?
How does one get off the merry-go-round?
I designed Falling in Love: A Course for Women in Authentic Self Nourishment to take busy women on the journey of slowing down, using restorative yoga and somatic practices. If you think you don’t have the time to slow down, this course is for you. Making change is infinitely easier with the support of community and with the continuity of six weeks of repetition and integration.
When we start cultivating a restorative relationship to life is when the Chinese finger trap loosens. Underneath all the layers of stress you get to meet your self. You can hear your intuition as the static quiets. Your biochemistry rebalances as your body remembers how to relax. Sleep becomes more nourishing. With clear values and priorities, life is more efficient, less frenzied, and you discover you actually have more time and space. Suddenly the world looks different, there’s more pleasure and abundance.
- Possible: anxiety and overwhelm from juggling all that life throws at us
- Impossible: Seeing self care as one more thing that’s impossible to fit
- Repossible: Slowing down is actually the key to abundance and pleasure in daily life