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SLOW DOWN TO SPEED UP: Honouring the natural cycles of life

When I lead trainings & coaching sessions what I hear people say is that they feel tired, stressed & overwhelmed. The burnout & other health issues statistics are growing every year. I believe that major shifts need to happen on how we perceive work & productivity. How we need to wake up from the trance that leads us straight to dead end. I also believe that some people will unfortunately need to crash to really shake our reality & force change. Many I speak with feel they are balancing on a thin line between holding together & crashing. Many feel anxious, sad, depressed & overwhelmed. Our modern culture is so fixated on action that we have looped ourselves into a hamster wheel & its speed is so high we bearely keep up. Our bodies have it's biological limitations where a balance between action & rest must be maintained. Our bodies ARE nature & as everything in nature needs to be balanced to work in harmony like the night & day, inhale & exhale. Our systems needs to change. Our way of working needs to change in looking holistically at organizational wellbeing & in everday work activities by SLOWING DOWN. The culture of innovation & effectiveness has brought many great ways to simplify work at the same time, the efficiency culture has led us to utilize every minute of work hours bearly having a moment to take a deep breath, have some good laugh & just allow ourselves to be for a moment to maintain that inner balance. We need to be aware that swinging the pendulum strongly into one direction will cause it to swing it back to the other extreme. I believe the health status of people is a direct reflection of the destructive fast-paced culture we live in & we all participate in this madness. If we won't change ourselves - our bodies & minds will make it for us. It makes me happy to see that the topic of wellbeing gets more & more popularized & more & more organizations start to invest into wellbeing strategies to help their employees. At the same time I believe many issues lie in the basics of our everday activities, expectations & interactions. The change needs to happen in our CORE. Do we truly value & respect ourselves & nature if we are REALLY honest with ourselves instead of just talking about it? In todays culture we have grown to be experts in talking & understanding. We know so much & we talk about it so much but we completely FAIL to embody it. It's like we all talk about it but we all wait for the other to make the move. Stop waiting. Take action now. It can be super small & it can be super huge. I don't care. Just make the step. What ever that step will be for YOU.

A great way is to ask yourself everyday;

  • What would be truly nourishing & relaxing for me right now?

  • What would help me bring myself back into restoration & feeling alive?

Here are some ideas that might help you:

  1. The stop rule – take moments accross the day to take a pause & bring yourself to the present moment. You can do that by focusing on your breath & extending it or just by looking out the window.

  2. A short dance/movement ritual – put on some music that you really enjoy & move your body in a way that feels good. Allow you body to lead you.

  3. Streching & yawning – Remember to now & then stretch your body in any way that feels good to you. Yawning is a great way to nourish your brain with oxygen.

  4. Tense & Release – Tense all your muscles in your body & them fully release, repeat 3x.

  5. Take a walk in the nature & focus on all the sensations surrounding you using all your 5 senses.

  6. Nidra yoga meditation or body scanning.

  7. Wim-Hof Breathwork

  8. Music that nourishes your soul.

  9. Setting the right boundaries & learning to say no.

  10. Letting go or minimize exposure of people & places that overwhelm you, burn you out or make you feel bad.

  11. Hydration.

  12. Practicing self-compassion & self-kindness; asking yourself “Is this kind?” & “Does it feel right?”

These are just a few. There are myriads of ways to do it & it is enough if you choose just one that fits you.

What is also important is that you learn to continuously tune into your body & it’s needs. In the beggining it might feel weird but as you continue doing it, it will start to communicate with you more & more. The more you feel good at the physiologial level, the better you will perform in all other areas of life.

As we help ourselves to relax & recover, the more solutions will arrive to issues we have been trying to forcefully figure out. Our creativity is able to flow when our nervous system feels safe. This is why prioritizing it can make you take much more aligned decisions & actions with greater congruence. That is also why the saying of "SLOWER IS FASTER" is so true!

Feel free to share your thoughts around this topic!

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