Getting ahead by slowing down

I’m typing this from Bermuda, where the endless turquoise crystal clear waters lap against sand so fine, powdery and pink speckled that you feel like you’re in a dreamy oasis. Or a very exclusive holiday brochure.

This beautiful island oasis in the Atlantic ocean has been my home for the past 11 weeks. And what an unexpectedly, exciting, fun-filled eleven weeks it’s been.

However, it wasn’t supposed to be this relaxing or therapeutic. In fact, it wasn’t supposed to be this lengthy. I’d intended to be here for a few weeks maximum. Yet, here I am still, swinging from a hammock on a porch as the sun beats down onto the surrounding palm trees and pretty hibiscus plants next to me.

For the first time – ever – I’ve learned to fully surrender and relinquish all control of my usual overly ambitious, determined nature. There has been no juggling of work demands or pressure to meet writing deadlines. Nor the constant mind noise of the handful of other side projects and ideas I normally have on the go. I consciously took the decision to press the ‘pause’ button on my life. And what a refreshing experience it’s been.

I read somewhere a while ago that slowing down is the key to shooting forward and I barely gave it a second thought. After all, when you’re self-employed and have to look after yourself – there isn’t time to slow down. No-one else is going to put a roof over your head or food in your stomach – so it’s not like you have a choice in the matter. Or do you?

By stepping out of ‘control’ mode I’ve found that I’ve inadvertently opened myself up to other opportunities that I wouldn’t have otherwise had. One of those things has been having fun – and lots of it. It’s been a whirlwind of non-stop entertainment and happy times for the entire trip.

There’s been the odd moment of feeling guilty that I’m here lavishing myself in sunshine whilst I could be doing one hundred other things… but that little voice inside me keeps saying ‘relax’. It reminds me to value all that I am and that which I deserve – for there is no price on our inner happiness. It reminds me that I’m not the sole master of my life, there is something far greater that rises up to meet me when I relinquish control – as I’ve had proven to me time and again throughout my travels. And as I take stock on an amazing three months spent in Bermuda, I realise it’s reminded me of one very invaluable lesson; to be balanced.

Too often we are so focused on earning money, or pushing forward with the next stage of our career or even relationship, that we forget to have fun. We forget the present moment and mostly importantly we forget that everything will happen as it’s supposed to. There is only so much we can control and as with any form of control – it can only be used moderately. Otherwise resistance occurs and plans go askew.

When we intentionally slow down and allow the universe to take the reins, we allow ourselves a nurturing incubation period. Our body and mind can re-energise and re-calibrate. It allows us the chance to not only be mindful but have the conscious clarity of where we are truly hoping to head on our path…. When we are constantly busy and in control mode, our ego begins to influence our true heart-felt desires with the things it feels we should do. Slowing down gives these desires the chance to filter through again. To set us on the correct path and remind us of who we truly are.

This is my message to you – yes you, the one reading this that is trying to push forward but constantly meeting barriers – this is your message to slow down. Allow yourself to yield to the invisible force that guides us all. And trust implicitly that all will be well – for you’ll soon shoot forward when you least expect.

As I finally prepare to leave Bermuda, I’m so thankful for this utterly enjoyable experience. I’ve made wonderful new friendships, connections, been inspired with new ideas and rested my very weary self. It’s been a much needed reflection time and allowed me to heal in so many ways.

And now, I’m ready for the next stage with a balanced mind and heart. And so many irreplaceable, happy memories. What a lucky woman I am!


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