Towards a More Positive Pace

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My Fitbit is old and cracked. When I do remember to wear it, I use it to count my steps and sometimes, my heart rate.

It occurred to me this morning I’d be more interested in the pace of my steps than the number of them.

Every Saturday, my pace slows. I’m more intentional. Even choosy. I have the wide open air of fewer obligations in which to make my decisions and walk my walk.

But flip the calendar page a single day and my pace quickens and probably my heart rate does too. No amount of list making or organization in the world gives me more than 24 hours in a day and 7 days in a week.

Believe me, I’ve tried. I’ve written lists in notebooks and planners. I’ve cleared clutter and created systems. All of these attempts are positive or important somehow to my sanity – and perhaps I’d be far worse off without them.

Still, life often feels like I want or need to be in two places at once and every single thing on the list is mutually crucial. Making one choice precludes another. If A, then B. All of the above sometimes feels like the only answer.

The pace quickens.

Stress provides a running commentary: Do it now. Don’t forget. Be sure to. And on and on and on.

I’m learning, however, that stress is a liar.

Stress tells me, “Do it all, and do it now,” but reality is different than stress-speak. The list needs doing in its time, yes, but the time isn’t all for one, one for all.

So how do I slow down in a hurry up world?

Well, today, I’ve been chopping garlic – a task which needs doing in order to get dinner on the table, but also a task with a needfully slow pace. Chop. Peel. Slice. Dice. There’s rhythm in the knife on wood. A pungent aroma. I’m zesting and squeezing an orange. More delightful smells. And then I add a satisfying grind or two of kosher salt.

Dinner’s on it’s way after a sensory symphony.

Slow and gentle living. Appreciative, even.

My tasks are either as pleasant or unpleasant as I care to make them. I can walk slowly and calmly or at a frantic, demanding, do-it-now pace. I can be more positive.

So what’s next in your day?

I’m off to fold clothing, warm from the dryer.

And won’t that be grand?

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