Written by Ashley Lopez
I am on (and have been) on a mission to “enjoy the process,” whatever that may be and to be present in the moment. I’ve always had a hard time slowing down. Everything has to be fast fast fast. Get it done. Lately, this quality has been sticking out like a domino out of place.
I took a seventy-five-minute restorative yoga class last week and although it was physically wonderful, I had a hard time slowing down my thoughts in poses that we had to hold for 2-4 minutes. Instead of soaking up the effects of my practice completely, I kept thinking things like, gosh this class is so slow, when are we moving on to the next pose, I’m not even sweating. I even told myself I’m not going to take another slow-flow yoga class again and remembered why I don’t practice yin yoga much.
Eventually, as usual, my inner being slapped my insides and repeated to me multiple times that this is exactly what I need to do to teach my mind to slooowwwww the fuck down, girl. So, if you’re anything like me (which I mean, c’mon we’re pretty awesome then), I have composed a list to refer to if we ever need to “enjoy the process again.”
- Okay, so this is probably the hardest one for me to do because this requires me to stop doing whatever I’m doing and just fall into oblivion. If you have a hard time doing so, try a guided meditation like I do to have a voice direct you to connecting with your soul. Yes, I believe we all have a soul. Do you believe?
- These are the meditations I like: meditation for sleep, meditation to be present, meditation to let go of fear, anxiety and worry, and meditation to connect to mother earth.
- Restorative yoga
- Well, you already know my experience. Try this one out to coach yourself to stay in one position at a time without jumping forth to the next. I believe this will overall help me to stay present and soak up the moment.
- Go to your mental happy place
- If you don’t have one, imagine one today. Please refer to my post Create your mental happy place for moments of distress (formally, Imagine this) for more information on this. Create a space in your head where you reach your momentary bliss.
- Bite your tongue or inner cheeks (gently, please)
- This may not sound appealing or may be terrible advice for some, but if you have enough control to bite and use just the right amount of force—try it. This mechanism calms me down more than it probably should and keeps me accountable when I feel my mouth catching up with my most curious feelings.
- Do activities that you typically race through
- Coloring is something that is stressful for me even though it should be a leisure. I strain to color a page so fast that my hand starts hurting. Re-training my brain to slow this down will help in the long run with my new mantra, “enjoy the process”.
- Do a full workout routine when you have enough time
- This includes a pre-workout stretch, isotonic and aerobic exercise and a post-workout stretch. Allowing your body and mind to combat through all these steps is a way to avoid rushing through your typical routine.
- Learn something new
- This way, you won’t be able to fly through it because you don’t know the information and you’re gaining new knowledge. It’s a win-win situation
- Self-care activities
- Draw a bath, put on a face mask, moisturize—do anything that gives you time to not think about the task at hand. Give yourself time to not do what you need to do because eventually you know you’ll do it anyways.
- Give yourself a realistic deadline
- Instead of doing errands A-Z in 1 day, allow yourself 3-5 days. Learn to prioritize what actually needs to get done rather than just what you want done.
- Visit someone you love and haven’t seen in a while
- This may seem a little strange, but the reason you haven’t seen someone is because you’re too busy or they’re too busy. If you make time to establish plans with someone you miss, you’ll more than likely have a good time and lose track of time. This is good for people like us (fast paced) 🙂
My hope is that this list can help someone enjoy the process once again.
Thanks for reading, xo.
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