There never seems to be enough time! I remember when my mom would tell me in the morning that the party was in the afternoon and I would feel like that was going to take forever! Now, I have the opposite problem, I had to wonder why time seemed to be moving faster the older I got?
I was checking all the right boxes; the business, children, home, friends, social life, travel yet I felt like something was missing. Just keep doing more, I thought. Busyness is the temporary band-aid covering up the ever growing wound of emptiness. It seemed that the busier I got the more time was passing me by. In a race against time and determined to win, I kept trying to pack more into each day. But, then I noticed that packing my schedule was like giving nitrous to the rocket ship that was my life and watching it blast off without me. If I was going to win this race I was going to have to take a drastically different approach! I was watching as my days turned into weeks and weeks into months and months into years and then I swear, I blinked and an entire decade flew by. That was when I thought to myself, this really can’t be what it is about. Is moving faster more productive? Or is it a method of distracting myself from experiencing my life completely? I wanted to savor the sweetness, drink in the beauty. I mean as corny as it sounds… I really wanted to stop and smell the roses.
Determined to slow time down, I thought about the difference between my life as a child and now. I discovered that the main differences were my expectations and habits. I had gotten caught in the vicious cycle of doing! In doing, my days were as tightly bound as my body and there was absolutely no room for variances. This means there is no room for miracles, spontaneous joy and the simple sweetness of life. I was creating all these great places, experiences, loved ones but wasn’t slowing down enough to enjoy them fully.
Fed up I decided to press pause on my life! And, I discovered a secret. We have it all wrong! This rushing through life has us spinning in circles but never really getting anywhere. When I paused, really paused, I discovered everything I was searching for, desired, held dear was there in the moment.
At first, I would do this through meditation weekend retreats at the Buddhist temple. A vow of silence, removal of technology and voila I felt the sweetness. It was magic. There was joy, love and contentment in the stillness. But, the answer isn’t running away from life. Instead I had to learn how to invite those pauses into my day regularly. I had to notice when I was spinning or feeling restricted, bound and rushed. That became my signal to stop breath and find some space. This might be a simple walk in nature, a 30 min meditation, or yoga all of which slow you down and ask you to pause, be present!
Try it right now. Take a deep breath and pause. Look around you and ask to see things in a new way. Try and look at it as if it is the first time. Be curious and I promise even the most mundane things will suddenly exude beauty, magic and wonder.