Based on text by Patrick Buggy
The Perils of “More, More, More”
Picture this: You’re driving up a hill. It’s steep. And it’s muddy.
The more effort approach is like slamming your foot on the accelerator. By doing this, the engine will rev and your wheels will spin faster. But if you don’t make progress up the hill, what’s the use?
Slowing down gives you an opportunity to consider alternate approaches. Perhaps there’s a different road that would serve you better. Maybe you need to get a new vehicle. Or maybe, walking would be most effective path up.
Acting with the idea that “more is always better, so I need to do more” contributes to:
- Anxiety: “How will I ever get where I want to?”
- A mindset of scarcity and impatience: “I’m not doing enough”
- Fear: “If I don’t create what I want here, then I won’t be okay in life.”
- A scattered mind: “So much to do, so little time!”
Which brings us to back to the lesson from the golf course: If you want to make better progress, start by slowing down.
The Benefits of Slowing Down
I first experienced the benefits of slowing down while playing golf. But since then, I’ve observed this principle at work in all areas of life.
In Communication + Relationships
- Speaking: Using fewer words and speaking intentionally begets clarity and understanding.
- Listening: Slowing down and getting present helps you actually hear what the other person is saying. (Instead of focusing on your response.)
- Sharing: Instead of blurting out the first thing that comes into your head, slowing down helps you consider what’s actually alive in you.
- Working through a challenge: Slowing down helps you zoom out, shift your perspective, and see the problem from a new angle.
- Sales: If you aren’t creating the number of clients you’d like, simply making more sales calls may not be your best route forward. Slowing down can help you understand opportunities to be of greater service to others by changing your approach.
- Creativity: When procrastinating, or feeling resistance, slowing down to do just one thing is an effective way to create momentum.
- Operations: If your days are consumed by logistical challenges, and you find yourself repeating similar tasks over and over again, just doing more work won’t solve the underlying issues. Slowing down can help you consider the underlying system, and find ways to expedite, automate, and improve it.
- Swimming: Slower strokes can help you maintain a streamlined position in the water, leading to faster speeds.
- Strength Training: Slowing down helps you prioritize good form to avoid injury, and use your energy effectively through.
- Rock Climbing: Slower movements help you maintain balance and control on the wall, leading to fewer falls.
- When overwhelmed: Slowing down is the best way to regain clarity in hectic and stressful times. Mindfully working with what you’re feeling, you can let go of anything that’s not serving you, shift your state, and establish a clear intention to move forward.
- Careers: Without clarity that you’re on a path that’s aligned with your purpose and priorities, working harder for the next promotion won’t feel as meaningful. Slowing down helps you orient yourself in the right direction, and make shifts if necessary.
- Rest: To maintain great energy, you need to slow down, rest, and refill the gas tank.
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg!
Part 3 coming soon!