When I was killing it as talent agent back in the day, I lived on caffeine, nicotine, and adrenaline. I was a total workaholic. It seemed my sense of self-worth increased, the more I worked and the less I slept. It sounds crazy now but I was addicted to the stress of getting it done, by myself, and I got a high from pulling off the impossible. I didn’t even realize how exhausted and drained I was until I got sick.
I learned from my experience with cancer that there is nothing impressive about living life on perpetual overdrive. Although I sometimes questioned the insane pace of my life, it was that diagnosis that forced me to STOP long enough to get present to the fact that something had to change. My behavior was that of an addict. I had simply replaced alcohol with work, so I was still being driven by a compulsion and I was still suffering.
Rock bottom feels and looks very different for different people. I knew I had hit mine when my body revealed that it could not continue to function at the level I was demanding. Something had to change.
Does my story resonate with you? Do you often question the quality of your life? You may be able to get it all done, and do it all on your own, but at what cost? Maybe you rarely see your family and only have a passing connection with your partner. Or, maybe you’re so exhausted and drained at the end of the day that you have zero energy to invest in yourself. Are you running on perpetual overdrive?
Workaholism isn’t free. You pay with your health, your happiness and the quality of your relationships. @Terri_Cole (Click to Tweet!)
If your body isn’t giving you signs to slow down, perhaps the Universe is. If you constantly find yourself running late, getting caught in traffic, or stuck in ridiculously long lines, these may be signs that you are running on overdrive. When faced with these sort of challenges and daily interruptions, rather than placing the blame on something or someone else, use it as an opportunity to tune in. You may be surprised by the clarity that you get from just a few moments of slowing down.
Reflecting back on my former way of being, my ‘succeed at any cost’ mentality was causing me more pain than gain. Thankfully now I know there is a way to be successful without all the stress.
To create success with more ease and flow you must begin to create new patterns and habits.
I find the best way to slow down is with a dedicated meditation practice. This practice increases your ability to be consciously awake in your life. It also give you more clarity of what is actually happening in your life. I went from truly believing that my life was happening to me to seeing that it was actually coming from me. (Huge distinction!)
Meditation has been an instrumental part of my life and has transformed the way I live it. I have taught thousands of clients and students to create a meditation practice because of my own transformation. The positive effects of a dedicated practice hold the power to deeply impact your quality of life. The simple act of present moment awareness that meditation reinforces helps you release the past and your limiting scripts. Learning to be mindfully present in your life allows you to let go of what is not serving you and fill your life with what will.
Meditation is one of the cornerstones of my psychotherapy practice and an integral part of my winning formula for helping clients overcome a host of issues to create lives they love. I want this for you too. So, this week I encourage you all to spend at least five minutes a day sitting in stillness, connecting to yourself. Meditation can dramatically increase the sense of joy and calm you experience daily, as well as decrease stress, and your need to run on overdrive.
In the comments below please share your experiences with meditation, and any questions you may have. This is one of my favorite topics, so I am excited to connect with you. Have a meditative week and as always, take care of you.
Love Love Love
*image courtesy of stuartpilbrowApril 25, 2014