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Slow down, you move too fast. You got to make the morning last. Just kicking down the cobblestones. Looking for fun and feeling groovy…

For some, it may bring back amazing memories. It definitely has for me… and it’s got me thinking about slowing down.

Everything is super-fast these days. We zoom through projects, meetings and to-do lists as rapidly as we can, just so we can jump to the next task without losing time. Our leaders feel pressured with making quick decisions, having to respond to the demands of their environments in record time. Our personal and professional relationships suffer because we can’t afford to clear up our schedules.

Life, in general, is moving way too fast.

How often have you caught yourself saying, ‘oh, my golly gosh, I can’t believe its February already!’ Or you meet up with a friend whom you haven’t seen for ages only to catch yourself saying, ‘My, hasn’t Katelyn gotten so big! What are you feeding her?’ Life just got too busy.

We are accelerating at an alarming speed. When we live at full throttle, we disrupt our own natural rhythms in a way that prevents us from listening to our inner calling.

Our body posture is unconsciously tight. We get smaller and smaller, to the point where we don’t appreciate the beauty around us and all the experiences and gifts in our lives. Instead, we are continuously seeking externally and asking ourselves, ‘what’s next?’

To get faster you must slow down

When we stop charging full steam ahead and become open to what’s here, there’s a radical shift in our experience of being alive. Eckhart Tolle, the author of The Power of Now, shares that the present moment is all we will ever have, yet we get caught up in the past or, more so these days, in the future.

But what if we practised mindfulness, and what if we participated in the now, the very present? What if we were to pause as often as we can in one day? What if we were more intentional with our time instead of blindly going about our day on autopilot?

What would change for you?

You will be pleasantly surprised to find space within the presence. You will notice so much more when you slow down. You will also get so much more done. You will be more productive and less stressed.

And that’s just the beginning.

You have the power to rewire you brain

Did you know that when you divide your attention on multiple activities, you are creating an overwhelming climate for your delicate brain? When you are stressed and inundated with tasks, your pre-frontal cortex – the executive part of your brain – shuts down. Then, you can’t think straight, you can’t plan and you can’t be strategic. Ultimately, you get stuck in a rut.

However, you do have the power to rewire your brain. Your brain is malleable. It is continually changing in response to your way of life and your environment.

The concept is called neuroplasticity. Basically, it means that you are literally reforming your brain every single day. The trick, though, is to slow down. You want to make sure you feed your brain with powerful conscious fulfilment.

It means single-tasking, rather than switching between a multitude of tasks. It also means avoiding stress like the plague, so to be present to perform specific brain training that sticks.

Neurons that fire together, wire together.

There’s an analogy that I like to use to illustrate the concept. Imagine you are driving or sitting in a car as a passenger. You are driving along and enjoying the view, then all of a sudden, you speed up a little. Then, you get this urge to go super-fast.

What’s the view like now? What are you not seeing? What are you missing out on?

The only place you can find inspiration is the present moment

Busy is the new stupid.

There is this standard that we constantly need to be doing something or we need to be on our way to somewhere else. We feel important if we are busy. At times, we feel that we are judged based on how busy we are, not so much on how productive or effective we are. After all, we achieve one task, tick, done! Then we seek the next big endeavour. ‘What is my next priority?’

We are on this hamster wheel striving for fulfilment and looking in all the wrong places. Let me break it to you gently. You are not a hamster, so get off the wheel and slow down to live the life you were born to live.

Set a daily intention to be present. Practise. Break the pattern of having everything checked off on your to-do list. Shift your focus from the future to the here and now.

It’s okay to slow down and become intensely conscious of the present moment.

Slow down and enjoy your mornings instead of rushing off to work in turmoil. Take time and be present with everything you do, from walking your dog, to having your cup of coffee or spending time with your loved ones before you start your day. Without your smartphone, checking emails or preparing your daily agenda.

Be really present. Be curious about their conversation. Engage with the most important people in your life.

Enjoy every moment as if it was going to be your last.

One day, it just might be.