Slow is the new fast

I had accomplished so many wonderful things in my life by the time I was 40...as a musician I had traveled the country many times...performed on three continents...played more awesome gigs than I can remember...but I didn't appreciate it to the fullest and none of it filled the void that I wanted to fill. The void of my own self love. There is no way it could. I had run myself ragged in an attempt to accomplish it all. I told myself that if I just made more money, or could play the next level of prestigious gig that I would be happier. I had avoided the truth that was right in front of my face, in order to try and create my own "story line"..my own narrative. I had pursued it all in an attempt to create a "me", that I could be proud of. Instead of accepting me as I AM.  But, in the middle of a breakdown, I had a breakthrough. I realized that the way I was viewing things made it all pointless and meaningless, because even as I reached those accomplishments I couldn't fully enjoy them if I didn't love myself. And, if I didn't love myself, I couldn't truly love anyone else. So, even when people gave me compliments for my music, I couldn't appreciate them.  I couldn't see their feedback as a way of telling me that I had served them well. As I came to some of these personal realizations, I saw that I had overlooked so many beautiful and simple things in life. As a result, I decided to slow down, WAY down, and focus on the things I had missed for so long. I had been chasing my proverbial tail, and it was time to stop. So, I changed my behavior. I changed my schedule. And no, I didn't (and don't) always know how it will work out financially or logistically. But then again I never have...so fuck it, will stressing over it help? So, I took time to love my friends and family in ways I realized that I had overlooked. I set out to enjoy beauty with no goal in mind. I started to make music and enjoy sounds again simply for the love of it. My one simple goal was to enjoy, and be grateful in the enjoying. I knew I needed to slow things down, and I did, but to my amazement I actually began to accomplish more of the things I wanted to... the things that really mattered to me.

So....What if there was nothing for you to accomplish? ...no story line to fulfill? ...no impending deadlines? ...no money to be made? ...no debts to be paid? ...What then? ...What would you do?


Well, MY answer was make a point out of enjoying more. I wanted to notice the good things and all of the simple things. Now I invest more fully in the relationships in my life. I simply want to be grateful, for what IS, and to SLOW DOWN so I can enjoy it.


Here are a few simple reminders to myself:


Eat slower and enjoy each bite

Speak slower and notice your words
Listen slower and hear the meaning
Touch slower and enjoy the connection
Travel slower and enjoy the journey
Work slower and realize it is love made manifest
Live slower and enjoy YOUR LIFE.

All of these simply remind me to be present in this very moment. Because the present is where life is lived, it's where true wealth is realized, and it's the only place where love can blossom. It is only in the present moment that I have the ability to choose (or enjoy) ANY of these things.


On the flip side, I have changed my intention. Now, I choose to play each note of music as a way of serving whoever might be listening. I choose, to seek out ways that I can serve others through my interests and abilities and experiences. I choose to invest in serving and I have learned that the only real joy is this service.


Now I choose to go slow, because there is no reason to be in hurry to get to some better place and time. I am always here and it's always now (and always will be). (..and isn't being in a hurry somehow just another way to express dissatisfaction in the present moment and to presume a future outcome, or situation is preferable?) "Going slow", and not being in a rush keeps me grounded.

So, I encourage anyone reading this, don't be afraid to unplug, log off, tune out, slow down and let go. The world WILL keep spinning.  


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“The affairs of the world will go on forever. Do not delay the practice of meditation.“ -Milarepa

Vanity of vanities! 
All is vanity. 
What does man gain by all the toil at which he toils under the sun? A generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever. The sun rises, and the sun goes down, and returns to the place where it rises. 
-King David, Ecclesiastes

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IJlZH3aucGE


this video is by my friend Jake, the Tao Te Ching set to music... it always inspires me.


For sound downloads click here.
Just a personal note: There is nothing new under the sun. I am just attempting to present info. here that has helped me. I hope to present it in a clear way based on my experience with anxiety which was a spiritual, psychological and emotional awakening for me. In retrospect of this experience I have been reading as much as I could to come to a deeper and more grounded understanding of this seemingly mystical thing that happened to me (so that I could share it with you). I'm not a doctor or a scientist. Please know this is only my experience. Yours will obviously be different, but since my experience was so similar to others I've talked to, I am hoping this may be helpful or useful to you in some way. It's also a way that I hope to share the love with you. That is my purpose here.



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