Slow Down…You Move Too Fast

Purposeful Parent Tip: Slow down the pace of your lives and pay attention.

The words to this Simon and Garfunkel song came to me this morning while watching an inspirational television program. Its core message was for all of us to slow down and “pay attention”. Immediately my mind went to two things. These lyrics and a message I received while on a retreat many years ago.

I had taken a few days for myself and attended a retreat with the intention of getting clarity on the writing of my baby journal. I was stuck and unclear about how (or if) to move forward. As I sat waiting for my private coaching session with the organizer, I looked out at the beautiful beach scenery and absorbed it. I closed my eyes and let myself be quiet for a moment or two. No small feat!

It must have been more than a moment or two because the words “Pay Attention” came to my mind several times. I opened my eyes, looked at my watch and realized my appointment was only minutes away. At the time, I thought this message was simply my subconscious mind doing me a favor in preventing me from being late. I see now that it was much more than that.

As I’ve stated in previous posts. I do things fast. I talk fast. I think fast. I even type fast. In fact I won a typing contest when I was in high school for typing nearly 200 words per minute. Crazy, huh? I don’t know how to relax or slow down or even, have fun. My life has been about working hard, accomplishing, doing more. The Type A personality in me I guess.

The recent tragic events in Newtown CT have forced us all to re-think our fast-paced lifestyle. Christmas preparations have been put on hold as we all grieve the loss of the little ones and the adults who cared for them. “It’s just not that important” is what I’ve been hearing. Nothing seems very important because we have been thrown into a tornado of sorrow, grief, confusion, anger, and loss.

We have been forced to slow down. We have been forced to pay attention. We have been forced to look at things a bit differently. This is a good thing.

There will be many good things that come out of this tragedy. Oh, I know it’s hard to see it now and some of you may think I’m discounting the events by even stating this. I assure you I am not. But out of the ashes of so many tragedies, good has prevailed. Because good ALWAYS wins over evil. Always.

When we thought we could not overcome the events of September 11, we did. We made it through Hurricane Katrina (and closer to home, Hurricane Sandy). We are strong, resilient, and above all, we believe in the power of good over evil.

There are many who do not want to or don’t feel right about celebrating Christmas given all that has happened. I don’t blame them. It’s hard to experience joy when so many are in pain. I do hope some will reconsider this however. The season of Christmas is about love and light and rebirth and hope. All of the things we need now.

Take a moment to share your love and light with your family and friends and to those suffering this Christmas. Take a moment and envision a day when tragedies like this are no more and there is peace on our planet. Take a moment to have hope for our future and that of our children’s.

In short…take a moment to pay attention. Pay attention to the still small voice inside. What is it telling you to do?

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