Slowing Down – Not Pushing the River

Expanding from my blog post yesterday I would like to talk more for the next few days about the phrases that have come to me as I have been healing. Starting with “Slowing down – not pushing the river.”  So what does this wonderful phrase actually mean?

Let’s talk first about what it does not mean. It does not mean slumping into a depressed heap that does not move from the couch or bed on a regular basis. That is called depression. However, rest and rejuvenation is important when you receive the message to slow down and not push things.

As my foot has been healing, my pace has slowed down. I can walk. I simply must walk more slowly. And not walk far. I am conscious of every step. This means I cannot grit my teeth and push on through to the goal line. I am conscious of the distance between two points that I would not have thought of before this injury.

One of the benefits of slowing down is that I am receiving more. By moving at my normal speed, I would often blow right by opportunities that are now readily apparent. I am liking this aspect of slowing down. If I were someone who had difficulty receiving support, this time would have been hard for me. But I am a quick learner – particularly when faced with no other choice – so I have actually enjoyed practicing the art of receiving support gracefully.

Another plus is that when I slow down, it gives me the opportunity to get into the flow of life, thus being carried on the current, rather than working too hard. I have known this for years, but I always welcome the opportunity to practice it on a more moment to moment basis.

There is an element of surrendering to the slowing down process that makes it all easier. I feel more compassionate towards myself. I am simply surrendering to what is. And in that surrendering, energy returns to me in a more elemental form somehow. But I cannot push it. It truly is a patience building practice. Hmmmm…..

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