Why Slow Down?

In Pursuit of Slow

‘Slow Extends Life?’ Jackie Jarvis

Is Fast better than Slow?

We are all living in a society that applauds busyness, we are all in a rush, squeezing things into already packed agendas, multi-tasking, never having time to stop. Being busy interpreted as being successful. Effective you may not be, accomplishing things that matter you may not be, happy and fulfilled you may not be, but if you are busy then you must be successful, mustn’t you?

With modern technology speed is everything. Fast food, same day delivery, fast turnaround. No one can wait any more. Our souls often out run by the speed of the life we have created. It may be why so many of us feel so out of balance, out of sync with ourselves.

The Faster we go the Faster our life passes

When you take a bus the journey often takes longer but you have time to people watch and to pay more attention to the places you pass by. It can be relaxing.

When you walk you feel each step. It takes longer but your connection to the places you walk through is stronger.

If you pay attention to what you see and hear the pleasure you get will be enhanced. Try it next time you go for a walk. Listen to the birds singing, really look at the flowers, trees, feel the breeze against your skin.

By going slower, you are able be more aware. More aware of the simple pleasurable things in your life, those things you miss, become blind to, when you never have time.

Each day that passes is another day of life that is over

Once a day is gone you can’t never have it back. All you keep is the learning and memories. If you don’t allow yourself any of these moments, what will you have at the end of another busy year? What will you have missed that is important to you in your life?

Sharing highlights of the year, month or even the day can be hard for many people and when asked often refer to something quite simple. Not usually the big grand thing that they spent the whole year striving to achieve.

Ask yourself those questions now:

What have been your highlights this year so far?

What do you remember as being special that made you happy?

Can you GO SLOW?

Some find going slow hard – they must be in a rush, must be busy. But when you take a pause you extend time. Days away on holiday always seem longer than those at home or in the office. When you are away from your normal environment doing something different it can be as if you have momentarily extended your life. You I am sure have felt this.

Walking 900 miles of two of the famous Caminos to Santiago felt like a whole lifetime had passed on the 2 routes when in fact it was only eight and a half weeks in total. That time in my normal environment would have passed in a flash.

Extend Time

Learning the Lessons of Slow will help you to extend your life as well as giving you more pleasure whilst you live it.

The faster you go the faster time passes… learn to savour those moments before it is too late.

 

 

 

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Why do I struggle to give myself permission to slow down?

In Pursuit of Slow

‘It’s ok to pause, life is not a race to the finish line’ Jackie Jarvis

If you are used to driving yourself hard and have a strong work ethic you will always have a long to do list. It is the norm just to keep going until it is finished, then before it is completed write another list to take over from where the last one left off. There are never enough hours in the day to get everything done. You carry on and on and on, the day never seems to end.

When someone asks you to take a morning off for something that is not work related you almost have a mild panic attack. You haven’t got time to stop. You feel uncomfortable at the thought of it. What excuse can you make. I know … I’m too busy, too busy doing what exactly? My to do list. Can’t you do it later? You work for yourself, so you should be able to take time out when you want to, shouldn’t you? I can’t, you just don’t understand you wail.

It is as if you are invisibly chained to your desk and can’t escape.

I can’t goof off

You still feel you must do your hours just like you did when you had a normal job in corporate life. You feel like you are cheating someone if you goof off, if you take a half day out to do something that is not work related. It doesn’t matter how many evenings and early mornings you have done recently, you still can’t give yourself permission. Does this sound familiar?

Who is that hard task master that won’t let you slow down a bit? You haven’t got a boss anymore.

A business colleague of mine built and sold a business, wrote about it, worked as a coach helping others grow their business, built a small property rental business, and then semi-retired but he still couldn’t give himself permission to slow down.

He had to suffer two life threatening illnesses before he realised that as he was lucky to still be here.  That it was ok if he decided to mow the lawn on a Monday morning and it was ok if he went to the cinema midweek in the afternoon.

When enough was enough

He finally decided that he had enough money to relax and that he didn’t need more. It was ok just to write one good page of his new novel each day, he didn’t have to sit at his computer hour after hour even when he wasn’t being productive. Suddenly years of mental programming just melted away. He was FREE.

In a way the illnesses had been a gift – brought to show him how to be ok with giving himself permission just to do things that make him happy.

We laughed together about it. But really it is quite sad. It took a serious illness for him to realise that it is ok to just slow down a bit and take some time for himself, to realise that life is not all about work, that there is another way to BE.

He realised that he could still accomplish the things that are important, but he doesn’t have to do it at breakneck speed, in fact he could savour them by taking more time. He is enjoying what his is doing more too. By not being worried about being productive, he is accomplishing more of what matters to his well-being. Maybe there is a lesson here for all of us.

Time to reflect

Do you struggle to give yourself permission to slow down, even when you need to?

Are you always doing something? Always have a list that you are working through?

Do you find it hard to take time off, interrupt your normal routine of work, sleep, eat, repeat?

If you do, ask yourself WHY? What stops you?

Is your answer real or imagined? Question it?

Do something differently

Disrupt your pattern and do something different. Don’t wait until you are ill to learn your lessons.

Do something now – give yourself a break, a treat, time out!

Break your own rules for a day and see how you feel.

I hope this helps you give yourself the permission you need to slow down.

 

 

 

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What are the Signs that Something in your Life or Work is Right for You?

In Pursuit of Slow

‘Signs let you know when to stay or when to walk away’ Jackie Jarvis

If you had not known pain, you would not know pleasure. You must have had connection to know disconnection. You must have had struggle to appreciate ease.

Our lives are full of these opposites, words that describe our experiences and the feelings that accompany them.

How often have you said to yourself or to someone when something has gone wrong in your life “I knew that wasn’t right from the start,” and then gone on to describe something you noticed or felt before you began.

Have you ever said, “I should have listened to my intuition, the signs were there, I just didn’t pay attention”?

You may also have experienced the opposite. When you knew something was right. You took steps towards it, feeling good from the start. Knowing in your bones that it was going to work out. And it did.

Most of our decisions, choices and experiences fall somewhere in between. We make choices and decisions about so many important things in our life. Sometimes taking our time, other times at great speed. We make mistakes. We get it right. We all deal with things as they come along, doing the best we can.

We spend time, energy and emotion in projects, people, businesses, relationships, events and more.

We invest our valuable life.

The signs are always there when you SLOW down

What are the signs that let you know that something, someone, or a situation is right for YOU?

If you are racing through life at a great speed, always busy, always multi-tasking, never taking a moment to take a pause the chances are you may miss the signs in your life that could let you know something is right or maybe wrong for you.

You may not have given yourself time to really think about what you want, so may not recognise it when it comes along, instead grasping at something that is not quite right. I am sure everyone recognises this.

In every wrong turn is the right one

You must know what is not right to know what is right. So, in every wrong turn there is a sign for the right one, if you pay attention.

It is like walking in the forest with a map, you take the wrong turning and get a bit lost, but returning to the map you can back track, take another route and find the one you were supposed to be on. You learnt which was not the way to your destination, but in doing so found out which was.

I have been in many situations, invested time in projects, spent time with people, been in partnerships and had relationships when I have known that something wasn’t right, but continued anyway hoping it would work itself out.

Something it has, but often the signs to learn and move on were there. In fact, the more I ignored them the worse they got. In some situations, it was as if the signs had to scream at me to get me to listen! Presenting me with more pain until I eventually shifted and moved, taking the learning with me.

I have also experienced the opposite when the situation, personal relationship, project or partnership just flowed. It was easy, smooth, fun, things worked out, and it went from strength to strength. When I think back on these situations, there were signs there too, signs to appreciate what I had and learn from it. Signs to commit to memory so they could be recognised when they appear again in the future.

So, to answer the question – what are the signs that let you know if something is right for you?

I think you know the answers.

There was a co-incidence or indicator early on

It felt or feels right not wrong

It flows as opposed to being continually blocked

It is easy as opposed to being continually difficult

It gives you pleasure as opposed to more and more pain

You enjoy the journey as opposed to hating the process

You can be yourself as opposed to feeing false

When the wrong way is the right way

Sometimes what is right for us and our soul’s journey can be a challenge or a difficult path. It is along this path that we learn, and we grow. As we pay attention, we get the opportunity to continually grow.

What seems wrong can be right. The wrong way may be the right way.

“The Ox would not know it was strong if it did not have to pull a cart”

The cart you must pull at time in your life can be one of those signs.

Signs for your journey are everywhere when you slow down and allow yourself time and space to see them.

Refection on Signs

Think of a situation/person/partnership in your life/work that is not feeling good right now.

What are you learning?

Think about a situation/person/partnership in your life/work that is feeling good right now.

What are you learning?

What signs have you seen that indicate what is the right way to go from here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Simple Power of Kindness

In Pursuit of Slow

Quote ‘Kindness is simple, kindness is good, kind is free for you to be’ Jackie Jarvis

Think about the last time someone did something really kind just for you? It may not have been a big gesture, just something simple yet it showed that person cared. It may have been someone you know or a stranger. They stopped what they were doing for themselves to do something for you.

When you are rushing through life, it is easy to miss these small gestures many people make every day. It is these simple acts of kindness that when noticed and appreciated will defiantley give you a boost.

Slowing down gives yourself a chance to be more aware of kindness, both in others and in yourself.

Value kindness

Kindness is certainly a quality I value highly. I do notice it in others and take time to be kind where ever I can myself. I catch myself sometimes when I am racing along with so much to do, to just stop and remember to be kind. To do something unexpected for someone. Something that might give them a boost, and being kind, the feeling in me is always good.

Kindness is important in all areas of life, at work and at home. At work everyone can be so focused on fulfilling agendas, hitting targets and deadlines that they can forget just to acknowledge that there is a human being in their path. Kindness can be seen as soft, as being a push over. Of course, this is an illusion created to protect fears that can block kind gestures.

Fears that block kindness

  • If I help this person I will get involved and then it will be expected
  • If I am kind, I may get taken advantage of
  • I may not be respected if I show my softer side
  • If I stop what I am doing to help another person I may not get what I want done
  • No one has ever been kind to me so why should I bother about others
  • Kindness makes me vulnerable

You can see with beliefs like this why many people are not as kind as they could be. If you are reading this and resonate with any of these beliefs, you could take this opportunity to ask yourself why you think this? Are they your beliefs of someone else’s? What may be another way of thinking about it?

Kindness is something we can learn to be. If we were lucky enough to see kindness in our parents or grand parents when we are younger and value it, the likelihood is that we may find it easier to practice the art ourselves. Or we may have had so much that we take it all for granted. Or you may not have experienced much kindness and craved it, so now realise how important it is and give more yourself to those around you.

Our life story shapes us all. Today you have a choice. You can choose to be kind. You can choose to make yourself aware the kindness that you have in your life, no matter how small and how simple.

It is also as important to be kind to yourself. (more on this subject in my book – In Pursuit of Slow)

Notice acts of kindness for a day

Just as an experiment notice how many acts of kindness you see happening in your place of work or at home this week. Write them down. It doesn’t matter how small they are, just pay attention and observe. If they involve you recognise with thanks.

Be extra kind yourself for a day

Why not choose to do something kind for someone in your place of work each day and notice the impact it has on both you and them.

It may be making them a tea or coffee, helping them with a project, giving them an introduction that was important to them, complementing them on a piece of work or an achievement.

Or it may be at home, giving extra time to listen to a friend, helping someone out, a kind word.

When you give a genuine act of kindness from the heart, the positive energy that goes with it, is responsible for the lift it gives to both you and the person who chose to be kind.

When you realise how important kindness is in your life, giving and receiving, it is something you can increase and have more access to. It is one of those things in life that is free and adds great richness.

Reflections

Who is kind to you?

What gestures of kindness have you noticed this week?

What have you done this week that is kind?

How can you add more kindness to your life?

 

 

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Listen to your Voice of Slow

In Pursuit of Slow

‘What does the voice that says Slow Down have to say to you?

Are you going too fast to remember the days that pass, are you spinning like a top, turning like a wheel, losing connection how your life is supposed to be.

Are you lost in your head, never truly there in the special moments of your life? Missing the pleasure, always something to do, someone to see.’

What does the voice of slow have to say, when it whispers gently to you? Does it ask you to stop rushing, juggling tasks, doing so much, pushing for more? Does it want you to rest a while? To savour moments in your life. To take a pause.

Do you heed its calling? Or choose to ignore its presence. Do you prefer to give attention to the other voice, the one that speaks louder, with more urgency in its tone?

You hear it say sharply, No, you can’t stop. If you stop you may never get going again, others may think you aren’t capable. You must not let anyone down. You have to keep going. Slowing down may mean you have failed.

Fast is better than Slow.

You don’t have permission to pause.

In quieter moments you hear the gentle voice of slow calling again. You may feel its constant presence, its desire for you to be happy, to have abundance and joy in your life. It wants to free you up from of your continual driving of yourself. Help you see what you have inside that you can trust in.  Show you how to challenge the other voice and its constant shoulds, must’s, must nots and cants.

Falsely created rules that don’t serve you.

What does your Voice of Slow want for you?

 

 

 

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Give yourself Permission to Go Slower

In Pursuit of Slow

“Give yourself permission to go at your own pace, life is not a race?” Jackie Jarvis

Are you aware of the pace at which you live your life? Are you aware of the pace at which you feel comfortable and when you feel over stretched?

Are there times when you are allowing others’ pace or agendas to control yours?  If you are, you may feel out of sorts, running when you would prefer to walk. Attempting to keep up all the time, creates unnecessary pressure, something or someone is always ahead of you. You never quite get there.

Do you need to keep up?  If so why?

We all have our own natural pace in life, one that we feel comfortable with, a bit like a pair of old shoes that are well worn in. Out pacing yourself for extended periods of time, rushing because that is how someone else wants it, doing more because someone else wants you to, will ultimately lead to discontent and stress.

Being aware of your own pace, giving yourself permission to do things the way you need to, to bring the best out in you, is vitally important. Being able to say no to an additional social event because you need some down time, being able to take your time in meetings to make your points, taking your time over an important action or interaction because it matters.

If it takes longer but you accomplish more, so be it. If you stop because you need to and let others go on, that doesn’t mean you failed. It means you listened to yourself.

Ultimately this life is yours to live the way you feel comfortable. If others want to go fast let them. This is your journey not theirs.

At times you may want to push yourself and see what you are capable of, other times you may be happy with a slower approach.

The most important thing is that you give yourself permission to go at your pace.

Reflections

Where are you out pacing yourself?

What do you want to change?

 

 

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Can I get access to positive feelings when I need them?

In Pursuit of Slow

Quote ‘You get what you focus on’ Jackie Jarvis

Don’t think about a blue tree … stop it now. I said don’t think about it! I wonder what you thought about. Did you think about a blue tree even although I told you not to? Did you try and make the blue tree go yellow?

Your mind and body react to suggestion. In order not to think about something, you must think about it first. So, if you say to yourself, I must not be nervous, you automatically access the word nervous and with it, the feelings of being nervous. This is not useful if you are just about to deliver a presentation or do your driving test. The more you think about not being nervous the more nervous you become.

Slow down and be aware

Slowing down and becoming more aware of the words you use, both inside your head and verbally you will be able to influence the states you get into. You may have caught yourself talking about a problem to a friend or partner and noticed how quickly you can get into the same negative or angry state talking about it as you felt when you were in the midst of it.
It may be useful to off load, a problem shared can be a relief, however, there comes a point where endlessly talking about it is not useful. It does not get you out of the negative state, it simply emerges you more in it.

So how can you change your state and access more positive energy and good feelings when you need them most.

You get what you focus on

It can be is as simple as changing the focus.

Think about something you really enjoy doing. Imagine yourself doing it, describe to yourself in your mind what you are doing. See pictures of yourself enjoying it. Take a deep breath and imagine yourself there now. How do you feel? Your mind doesn’t really know the difference between a real and an imagined event, so if you take your mind somewhere positive, you can access the good feelings that go with it.

If you find yourself feeling nervous about something and would prefer to feel confident and positive you can alter your state instantly by focusing it on something positive. You may choose to think about the last time you succeeded. Nerves come from thinking that something may go wrong, so think about what could possibly go right. See the outcome being the one you most want. Live it in advance the way you want it to be. You need to be consciously aware of what is happening in your mind and your body to do this.

I had to go do an Online Live TV interview the other day at short notice, so didn’t have a huge amount of preparation time. I find myself worrying a bit and caught myself doubting myself. What if I go blank?

A sure-fire way to ensure that I would go blank! In fact, as I said, it to myself, I almost forgot the name of the person about to interview me. I even had to check. I then just took a deep breath and told myself that I know my subject and I would enjoy this. It would be fun. My state changed instantly, and I relaxed and was able to do a great interview that was natural and came from the heart.

You have the power to change your state

The ability to change your state of mind will take some practice.

The first step when you find yourself getting into a negative state is to simply to take a pause. Give yourself a moment.

Became aware of the language you are using, verbally and inside your head.

Decide what it is that you want instead. Think of the positive outcome you want.

Think and talk about what you want instead of what you don’t want.

Think about the Yellow Tree (not the blue one, if you remember how I started this blog)

Change your posture. Stand or sit tall, take some deep breaths and let go of any negative thoughts with each out breath. Breath in positive energy with each in breath.
Imagine how you will feel when whatever it is you are about to do, goes really well!

See you can do it.

Positive energy is available to you when you want. Change your thoughts and you will change how you feel in an instant.

Reflections

Think about a minor problem you have right now that you have been a bit worried about?

Think about what you want, making sure your language is positive?

What is the first step you could take to move towards this outcome?

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One day only book promotion Sat 18th May

In Pursuit of Slow

Buy a Kindle copy of my book for £1.99 ( normal price £4.95) on Sat 18th May only and tell your friends about it.  (The shortened link to this page is   http://bit.ly/2WKgQ8d)

Get Free access to my 12-week online course when you buy the book

For that day only anyone buying the Kindle edition will get FREE access to my 12-week video course which normally costs £24.  Simply send us proof of purchase and we will give you course access.

Here is a link to use on Saturday 18th May

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07N1T8P2Z

Please tell your friends about it too

If they haven’t heard of the book before it may be helpful to include one of the 5-star reviews like the one below or share what you gained from reading it.

‘If you are a busy person, take my advice and read this book. It will change how you think and act, and certainly will make you think before you act! Take the time to read it and it will give you time to work, rest and play in a more rewarding way. It is thoughtfully written, doesn’t preach, doesn’t threaten but gently cajoles and guides. Jackie gives us permission to slow down and think about our busy lives differently. It works! –Lynn Shepherd.

Thanks in advance for your support, I really do appreciate it

Jackie x

  1. Send proof of purchase to sales@endlessbookcase.com to access to my online course free of charge.  You will be sent a login.
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Are you being true to your values?

In Pursuit of Slow

‘Let your values be your guiding light’ Jackie Jarvis

What is important to you in your life? What really matters most?

Your values guide you, they let you know when something is right, or something is not. Your values provide an important framework in your life. A structure and strength from which you can make decisions and choices.

What happens when you feel that you are living a life that is out of sync with your values and what matters to you? You may be putting up with a situation or a person’s behaviour for the greater good. But it is not what you really want deep down. You know something is not right.

You could be in a relationship where one-person values independence and freedom and the other sharing and commitment, it is likely source of disagreement when the behaviours that stem from those values appear to be in direct conflict with each other.

It might be that you value something and the partners you are working with do not. You might value having fun and being flexible; they may value routine and rules. As a result, you feel out of sorts, out of sync.

If you are living a life where what is important to you is not shared by the others around you, you most certainly will not be happy.

The best feelings come when you share values with the people that you spend your time with, both at home and at work. It makes everything easy!

For example, if you all value honesty, integrity and respectful communication the likelihood is that you will all do what you can to be true to those values. You will all know when something isn’t right and address it together.

Know your values

If you are clear about what you value and the way you want to live your life at home as well as at work those values can guide your choices. Both with what you do and who you choose to spend your time with.

Clarity about what matters to you in your life, relationships, work, with your family is the first step to more fulfilment of those values.

If you don’t know what they are you can’t be guided by them.

Let your inner radar guide you – don’t ignore it

Mistakes can be made in life when we don’t pay enough attention to our values and the messages, they are giving us. When we ignore our inner radar because we are too busy, in a hurry with no time to ask important question of ourselves and others.

You will know when something is wrong, in a relationship, at work, with friends and family. You will know when a value of yours has not been respected.
You may choose to ignore it. To brush it under the carpet, to say it doesn’t matter. But is does!

Your values and what really matters to you is your bedrock – the foundations of your life from which all else stems.

Refection

Are you living a life with others that share and respect your values?

Are you giving your values the attention they deserve?

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This book has important messages for you if…

In Pursuit of Slow

You are running too fast, doing too much, and generally feeling disillusioned with the pressure to keep up.

Trying to be perfect can quickly turn into an ongoing battle. Your life becomes like Groundhog Day, more of the same, over and over again. You want to slow down but you won’t give yourself permission. The race you find yourself in is getting harder to win. You are tired of the struggle. You want yourself back.

“Come with me where dreams are born and time is never planned”

Peter Pan

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About our blog

This blog provides news and updates specifically about the book  In Pursuit of Slow and any associated courses or event.