Learning how to slow down is critical to life as we know it.
We are raised to believe that if we work more, more and more, we will gain more life. In actuality, working hard is important for good ethics, but trying to fit 3 lives into 1 is exhausting – anyway you slice it.
What I have experienced is that people are looking for happiness. Some are looking in the wrong places, but everyone is searching.
What I have learned is life is NOW. It’s actually better to slow down and focus on less. You can then enjoy the moments, the people, the children in your life.
This weekend, my kids were sick. They wanted to go to a birthday party on Saturday that we had been talking about. One of my daughters started to cry as she was trying to convince me that she was well enough to go to the party.
What a teachable moment I thought. She was trying to push herself through her sickness much like we do as adults. How many times have you pushed yourself through illness to get to work for fear of your absence being perceived wrong? How many times have you pushed yourself through sickness to go out with your friends due to social expectations and pressure? And for what? What is the reward here? Is it happiness??
When did we stop prioritizing our health as most important? How good will we be to world if we aren’t here?
We now use the mind, our most powerful tool, against ourselves. We keep telling ourselves, we are okay, we are fine, I can do this. And then we find ourselves in a serious situation of health concerns that should serve as a wake up call.
What I know for sure: stress is a killer.
But we have control over our lives. We have to reset our thresholds for yes or no in our lives. Don’t feel less than because you are doing less things than other people. What matters most is whether you are enjoying your life. Are you happy? I promise you, those with the most money or biggest jobs and always busy….are not guaranteed happiness anymore than you. Happiness is about enjoy your life. In this moment right now. Not later when you can accomplish more. But right now wherever you are.
As I convinced my daughter the importance of slowing down when our bodies need to, and how saying no to a birthday party will set her up for a better week at school, her tears subsided. I prayed that she was learning the beginning work of how to slow down and be good to herself. I hoped that she would grow up and not get sucked into busyness addiction like I once did.
This world will work you, if you let it. This world will socialize you into thinking the more you have, the more you work 80 hour weeks…the more happiness will be brought into your life.
This just isn’t true. We have to build our capacity to stop, listen and live. Slow down. Less IS more.
I pray that you slow down a little today and feel happy.
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