Pace is a funny thing. We’re often told (logically) to “go at your own pace”, and yet we’re all susceptible at times to the pressure of ‘shoulds’ and ‘milestones’.
Furthermore, we’re often tricked into thinking that by taking on more commitments, we are somehow progressing in life more quickly, and thus we’re more successful.
But what happens when you’re overwhelming yourself to a point where you’re not really doing anything that well?
Or when you’re stretched too thin so that you’re not enjoying the things that you once loved? Or worse, you’re worn out?
Here’s the not-so-secret-secret: everyone really does have their own pace, and it’s important to recognise your own ‘flow’.
There is no shame in finding your groove, even if your output is seemingly slower than others. We are all individuals and therefore our recipe for everything in life is entirely unique.
To kick start the new week I’m so happy to open up the floor to the sage that is Chelsea, for her own personal take (and tips!) on shaking off the guilt of ‘going slow’/at your own pace.
Over to Miss Becker!
Love, Monica x
How to Shake Off the Guilt of ‘Going Slow’
/At Your Own Pace
If you haven’t noticed by now, we live in a past-faced world.
Even thinking back to childhood, it’s not hard to remember trying to beat everyone around the track, or to finish your math problems early, or to not be the last one stuck at the table eating your veggies. Whatever it was, there’s an early push to finish first, or fast.
That, of course, carries us through childhood and the rest of our young adult lives – trying to finish College/University in 4 years, trying to find a top job right after, trying to buy a home before you’re 30. It seems to be a never-ending cycle, and one that happens on autopilot.
It’s simply how our society has worked for a long time – and has only amplified in the age of technology.
There is quite literally more we could be doing in every second – and now with social media to “prove” what you’re accomplishing, it’s hard to hide from it.
And I know I’m 100% guilty of trying to go fast – to do more, more, more – to keep up with The Joneses, as they say.
I realized that I was running way faster than I preferred.
It actually wasn’t until I created my own company that I was slapped in the face with this natural urge for more – and realized that I was running way faster than I preferred.
As I built my editorial company – Becker Editorial – from the ground up, it was almost a high when I brought a new client on.
I’d sometimes spend hours looking for prospective clients to email about work – all the while I had a full load of deadlines waiting for me in my calendar.
But that wasn’t enough.
I started feeling like MORE made up my worth.
If I didn’t have more new clients every week, I’d failed. I’d failed, if I didn’t make more money each week. If my business wasn’t growing – you guessed it! – I’d failed.
But the ironic thing was my business was booming, steadily booming. I was up to my eyeballs in work, barely having time to sit down for a proper dinner with my fiancé or take a full day off on the weekend.
But of course, I wanted more.
Until I didn’t.
As I sat there at my desk one ordinary Wednesday and prepped for a call with a new client (yay!!!), I had something similar to a panic attack occur. The thought of bringing on another client and somehow fitting their tasks into my completely full calendar hit home. And sure enough, after the call, the feelings only got worse (because she did in fact want me to take on some of her tasks – and add about 5 hours to my work week, each week).
It was then that I realized I was striving for more, yet I didn’t actually want more. I thought I needed more. And I didn’t.
I called her back the next day and let her know the deal.
And you know what? She was completely understanding. She actually even applauded me for noticing that I was taking too much on, because she felt the exact same way.
“I realized I was striving for more,
yet I didn’t actually want more.
I thought I needed more.
And I didn’t.”
I’m sure her and I aren’t the only ones who feel a constant pull for more. The thing is, it doesn’t always make sense.
Each of us is different, we all have a unique flow that makes us feel good, and our breaking points vary. And that’s sometimes hard to realize in a society that makes you think you always need the next big thing. “Because that’s just what you do!”
Since that Wednesday morning freak-out, I can’t say that my urge to bring on more clients has subsided completely, but man, has it faded. It’s trickled to other areas of my life as well – I notice myself booking less happy hours, trying to watch less TV shows, even trying to attend less workout classes. Instead of attempting to hit these unrealistic goals that I somehow placed upon myself, (You have to be caught up on all the shows! You must workout 5x a week to be fit! You must make a million dollars to be successful!), I’m working on going with my own flow.
“we all have a unique flow that makes us feel good,
and our breaking points vary.
And that’s sometimes hard to realize in a society
that makes you think you always need the next big thing.”
It’s a daily check-in with myself and how I’m feeling. If I genuinely feel centered and like I would like to shake things up, I go for more. But on 99% of the days where I feel like I’m completely content with what I’ve got, I do me.
And I let the guilt of “ being less” go out the window, because I’m growing and improving in my very own ways.
So I urge you, friends, to go slow this week – or at least until you feel like you truly want more.
Give yourself a break and allow yourself to do less, be less.
I assure you that you can still meet goals by moving slower, if that’s the way you’re wired.
You owe it to your body, your mind, your soul, to move at the pace it was intended to.
Good luck! And please share any stories you have about moving fast or slow.
What’s Your Take?
Are you on your own pace? Or that of others?
Love, Chelsea x