I think there is something we aren't admitting to ourselves.
I stumbled upon it this week, quite by accident. I'm pretty sure I've known it before...and even shared it in a few different ways with you ... but for whatever reason, this time it punched me in the face.
Watching life speed by.
Let me start by sharing what probably woke up this sleeping revelation (and very well could be your alarm as well):
I'm just coming off a whirlwind high from my Encaustic Experience class. Nearly every night, I was working until at least 9 p.m., sometimes well past that. For six or so weeks, every member of my family knew where to find me: in front of the computer, the video camera, or passed out on the bed. It was an AMAZING experience...and a huge adjustment.
This round is officially over (yes, THIS round...stay tuned!), and I've had a few days "off". I've been able to get caught up on laundry again, start tackling my inbox, and even go out to lunch with my husband. In between those times, I'm still working - blogging, designing the next class, getting ready for the re-launch of the Encaustic Experience, and painting / creating every chance I get.
While things have been peaceful (and far more relaxed around the house), I had this nagging feeling inside that something isn't right. Finally, I sat down to journal and just let it all come out.
I was totally surprised by what I discovered.
Not of the spider on the floor (he looked friendly enough), not of running out of chai (we always have backup boxes of concentrate), and not of running out of ideas (I have notebooks full).
I'm not even terrified of being busy again - and that is what surprised me most.
I am terrified of slowing down.
I am afraid that if I don't come out with the next class quickly, I lose people.
I am afraid that if I don't blog consistently, even when I've nothing to say, followers will lose interest and stop showing up.
I am afraid that if I don't make money again soon, my husband or some relatives or some friends will question my sincerity of commitment to the business.
I am afraid that if I don't make money again soon, I will question the sincerity of my commitment.
I am afraid that I'm just becoming "comfortable" with slowing down and taking the easy way out.
I am afraid that if I don't plan out my next year, with classes in order, blog posts at the ready, and paintings ready to ship out, that I will never get anywhere with this business.
I am afraid that if I don't feel stressed, that I'm not working hard enough.
I am afraid that by letting myself slow down, I will .....
The thing is, I want a slow-paced life.
I don't like being rushed. I don't like the pressure of 20 commitments the second I wake up. And believe it or not,
I think one can successfully run a business, maintain a beautiful household, and raise happy children at this slow pace.
(At least, this is what I believe deep down and am trying to allow the rest of myself to trust.)
This is contradictory to everything I've been told (outside of the tale of the tortoise and the hare). I've been told that slowing down in a business can mean the end of that business. And in life, slowing down means a much slower walk to "success"...if you ever reach it at all.
So I rush, get exhausted, and give up on one thing or another (an idea for a class design here, a redesigned room in the house there...). I find a bit of rest, my breath, a bit of inspiration, and enter the cycle all over again.
And while I honor the cycle, I'm slowing down the wheel.
And yes, I'm terrified.
But again and again, I ask myself: What's the rush?
We can hurry through one business idea after another, rush the kids from one lesson to another, treat ourselves to one thing or another, deny ourselves one thing or another.
Why are we so anxious to get on to the other?
I am most at peace when I am able to be present. And I am most able to be present when I'm not concerned with what is coming next. And I'm least concerned with what is coming next when I feel like I can handle what is, right now.
The second I become overwhelmed, the whole peace-cycle falls apart.
And the second the wheel speeds up, I become overwhelmed.
See where all of this is going?
So admit it. Your wheels are spinning a bit fast as well. You might even be as scared as I am to slow them down.
What would people think if you just sat on the couch for an hour - no t.v., just sat? What would happen if your next project didn't come out in 6 weeks, but instead, 6 months?
What would happen to you if you slowed down?
I can't tell you the answers. But I can tell you this:
It is worth finding out.
Let's discover together, shall we?
Go ahead, share with me how you'll slow down....it's easier when we're not alone.