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Why The Rush?

Why The Rush?

January 09, 20233 min read

My students and I usually chat a bit before and after class.  It's definitely something I look forward to.  Besides the usual life updates, sometimes gems get dropped into the convo out of nowhere.  That happened the other day, and I knew at that moment that I needed to write about it.

Picture this.  We'd just finished an hour-long stretching class.  Everyone was relaxed, feeling calm and gooey, our bodies happy.  One of my students (you know who you are…) mentioned that up next on her day was to get her house ready for a big dinner party that night.  She said she often gets anxious and stressed when she's in party prep mode. 

That opened the door to a new concept:  What if she didn't?

We started talking about how we rush around, trying to get everything just so (meaning perfect for our guests), making sure all the things are done in all the right ways.

Besides reminding her that her true friends won't give a rip how clean her house is, I offered the option of trying to change up the urgency and instead keep the peace that she'd just created during class.  I know, it sounds easy.  And I guess it is, technically.  But for folks like me, it pretty much goes against my default programming. 

I unintentionally hurry in, well, basically everything.  There's a sense of urgency that comes along with even the most mundane things. 

Brushing my teeth in the morning = Gotta do it quickly so I can get going with my day.  Eating at a lightning-fast speed =  Probably a leftover conditioning of my days as a mom who occasionally wanted to eat a warm meal.  Hurrying up to get ready for my evening wind-down rituals – like, it's completely laughable just to type the words "hurrying up to wind down."  But here we are.

Most of us have picked up habits, patterns, and characteristics throughout our lives.  Whether it's from parental influence or environmental conditioning doesn't really matter.  It's what we do with that info once we notice we're in the thick of it that makes a difference.

Staying on the topic of hurrying, the next time you notice yourself rushing for no reason, take a sec and just pause.  Pump the breaks, slow your breathing, redirect your thoughts – do whatever you need to do to slow the process down even by a millisecond.  

Notice I didn't say to trash talk yourself.  You're the observer here, not the judge and jury.  

 

By slowing things down a bit – whether it's your movements, your thoughts, or your breathing – you're doing some pretty great things for your body.  Your muscles relax, your blood pressure and heart rate lower, and you move from fight-or-flight mode and into a more rest-and-relax state.  These are just the obvious benefits, but in my mind, they're definitely enough of a reason to break the rush cycle.

The next time I saw that student in class, I asked her how the party prep went.  She said she was so calm and peaceful during the process, and the party was a success.  We all chuckled as we wondered out loud, why isn't this how we go about our daily activities?  Why do feel like we need to frantically rush throughout our lives?  

Good news is we don't.  We just have to remind ourselves that it's okay to take our foot off the gas.  See ya later, Speed Racer.  Hello, Cruiseville.

AyurvedaYogaMeditationPeaceful LivingRelaxationSlow DownWellness Techniques
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