Sadly, the jubilation of fixing the leaky pipe only lasted a few hours.
Even knowing I’m essence-tially slow and taking longer than a tradesperson to fix the pipe made total sense, didn’t take long for Negative Nelly to have a field day at making me feel inadequate for being so slow.
What’s with that?
Speed is a measure of worthiness?
If so, I’m in deep trouble.
Instead, I’ll call the notion out for what it is – a big pile of doo-doo.
Speed does not elevate one’s worthiness.
It did offer up time to obserflect and unwind where the notion comes from.
From a very young age, we’re bombarded with subtle and not so subtle messages how speed is valued.
Sure, there’s the fable about the tortoise and hare telling us slow and steady wins the race.
But that’s more a tale about perseverance and boastfulness.
Think about all the ways we’re led to believe speed is good.
In school, we picked up on kids who shot up their hand the fastest were deemed the smartest.
Graduating early is seen as a sign of genius.
Quick responses to questions in business meetings meant you were capable, on top of things or a rising star.
Sexy cars go fast.
Usain Bolt and Michael Phelps are placed on pedestals.
Pitches and slapshots are clocked for comparisons.
Time is money.
Internet speed is always too slow.
People want transformation yesterday.
Pushing limits and boundaries is thrilling.
Fast is productive.
Hold the phone.
Slow is not unproductive.
Slow is not, repeat – NOT laziness.
Busy doesn’t guarantee productiveness or effectiveness.
It only ensures busyness.
Productive and effective sourced from essence-tially slowness looks and feels way different.
Appearances are not what they seem.
Slow is made out to be wrong. Abnormal.
A character flaw, inadequacy or incompetence.
Even a burden to others by holding them back.
When I was 7 or 8 years old, my older sister and I were responsible for washing the dishes after supper.
She always washed meaning I always dried.
One night having whined enough about never washing, my mom told my sister we had to switch.
Apparently, there was some sort of prestige attached to washing because I felt very important being at the helm.
That is until my sister nagged at me continuously to go faster.
I was keeping her from hanging out with her friends.
Feeling small and pressured I finally told her to finish washing.
I still remember her running off while holding a tea towel drying what was left.
Even today I feel awkward washing dishes with someone else and feeling compelled to not have them wait.
Being slow in a fast society isn’t easy.
It takes resilience and steadfastness to live in a world that wants to scoop you up in the whirlwind.
There’s headway being made though.
A levelling of the playing field between living fast and slow.
There are movements afoot to slow down.
To recognize the be in being.
Collaboration is gaining ground over competition.
Thoughtful, well-considered responses are being welcomed and appreciated.
Those of us who are essense-tially slow or are learning to slow down are finding each other.
Communities are forming to anchor another way is okay, and to let each other know they are not alone.
Slow is different, not divergent.
I’m not expecting to see gold medals awarded to the slowest entrant any time soon.
Patience from others might not be forthcoming either.
Remember who you are can be different – and perfectly normal – from what others tell you.
Stay true to yourself.
Find others who live essence-tially slow too.
It’s hard to feel wrong and alone when connected to people just like you.
feel free to share
chief nudging officer
Crazy for cats and potatoes, Lorraine's insatiable curiosity of Life leads her to question, explore and push beyond the box. A self-professed "left-brained creative big picture" type, she has an intuitive knack for seeing beyond and beneath first appearances while at the same time nerding out on the details. Most of all she sees and holds others in their highest until they can see it for themselves.