Slow Down to Move F-A-R — A September Self-Care Thought

Coastal Path

Slow down and go F-A-R.

Slow down.

Remember racing around the yard or through the living room and hearing those words?

Indeed, how many time have you heard that advice? Maybe it was from your parents or grandparents, long ago, and you chafed at it.

More recently, have you heard it from your partner, or your doctor, perhaps? Or from a spiritual advisor…or even from a small, wise voice inside?

Well, now I’m telling you that, too. It’s the single best way to re-group, re-focus, and re-energize yourself.  It costs nothing, and all it takes is a leap of faith and some self-discipline.

Slow Down and Go F-A-R

The advice to slow down may sound like a luxury, but it is entirely practical. It’s far more practical than pushing yourself to exhaustion.

And when you are stressed and someone tells you to slow down, it may seem counter-intuitive. But believe me, as you develop the 3 skills I’ll describe below, you’ll put yourself back on track and bring positive energy and focus to whatever you need to do in your life.

Slow Down-Step #1=Focus:

Focus is essential. It’s the base for everything that follows.

You only need 5-minutes to do this, so start right now.  (And it feels wonderful, so don’t be surprised if you find yourself wanting to expand the time you spend on this.)

Take a seat in a quiet place, tune out any distractions, and tune into your breath. Slowly feel yourself relax and expand. If your mind wanders (and it will) just gently call it back to your breath.

This priceless skill is instantly available to you, anywhere and any time. To make full use of it requires your determination and ongoing practice. The rewards are incalculable. You cannot claim your time until your claim your power to be in the moment and be in charge of your thoughts.

Slow Down-Step #2=Assert:

Tell yourself, in a clear, firm, friendly way, that you can say no.

Follow through by starting with low-priority demands. Is there something you can say no to easily, without big repercussions, to start getting comfortable with this? It’s a skill that takes practice, so be patient with yourself and remember that assertiveness needn’t be harsh. But it is clear and direct.

Ultimately, the more self-referenced you are willing to be, the more power you will exercise over your time. This is not at the cost of relationships; in fact, taking the time to negotiate boundaries with sensitivity and presence of mind can invite everyone involved to develop new strengths and trust.

Slow Down-Step #3=Respond:

I love this reframing of the word.  Responsibility comes from the ability to respond.

Every time you change your time choices, you are responding to your own values and priorities, and you are changing your life.

Think about it: When you create open space in your life you are actively valuing and protecting it. You are buying this time by trading in other activities. It’s a give-and-take, both with the people in your life who are affected AND within yourself.

The more time you take to focus, assert and take responsibility for your life, the more self-referenced you’ll become and the farther you’ll go. Taking time for yourself helps you build an unshakeable base of self-worth. And as you work from that base, making decisions that serve you becomes easier and easier.

Indeed, positive builds on positive. New doors will open, and you can use your new strengths to explore the very best ways to use your time.

Now, ask yourself: How can you start restructuring your time choices today to reach new levels of effectiveness?

And here’s more help for you…

Learn more about the gifts of energy, time and meaning that my unique, Heart-Based Time Management™ System offers.  To begin your transformational journey, sign up for my complimentary Finding Time Success Kit.

Receive 3 complimentary Time Success tools from The Time Finder. The Success Kit includes “The Finding Time Boundary Template: 9 Simple, Sequential Steps to Find More Time and Recharge Your Energy!” Using a workbook format this powerful and practical time template helps you progress beyond disappointment and frustration. You also receive weekly Finding Time Tips, and the monthly, award-winning Finding Time E-zine when you click this link to claim your Success Kit.

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