I don’t own a Ferrari. I am one of the few males on the earth that can honestly say that I would never want to own one. Yes, they are stunning, high-performance vehicles…art on wheels.
Why does it feel like we are living our lives at the stratospheric speed of a Ferrari? As we move through life at such a rapid pace, we are making ourselves sicker and more riddled with stress, increasing our chances of shortening our life-span instead of prolonging it….crashing our Ferrari!
Do you ever complain that there “are just not enough hours in the day to accomplish everything”? Do you find yourself worn down because you have just too much on your plate?
These are interesting times we live in. We are surrounded with technology that allows us to get more things done faster. However, the very technology that is supposed to make our lives easier, has actually further complicated our lives because the barriers to accomplish more have been removed allowing us to pile on even more tasks to be completed during a 24 hour period.
Answers are required faster, presentations are requested sooner, emails are expected to be replied to immediately and if you can’t get the work done at your desk, you either return calls on the road, or even worse, evenings, weekends and vacations are now infected by work.
Even our kids are suffering from the fast-paced world we have created. Between spending full days at school complete with homework, some kids are programmed up the ying-yang…with extra-curricular activities before and after school and often on the weekend. They just don’t have any time to spend at home with their family or to just be a kid.
It all seems too exhausting.
How is anyone supposed to take care of their mental and physical health and their personal relationships when there just isn’t anytime left over and we are physically drained?
What kind of lives are we living? Are we living or merely existing?
I would like to suggest that in order to extend our lives and increase its quality, we must stop right now and take stock in how we spend each day and make some significant changes. We need to get rid of our Ferraris (as painful as that might seem to some of you) and replace it with a more fuel-efficient, practical vehicle.
Before you read on…decide, “Is the way I am living my life really working for me?”
Once you have decided that you want to re-gain some control, I would like to suggest some very simple, initial steps to get you on your way…
Turn it off!!
Even though you think the world might end and you will be fired on the spot, turn off your Smartphone/cell phone and computer at a reasonable hour (no, not right before you go to bed). How you use your technology after business hours will determine how and when people will try to get hold of you. Believe it or not, “they” have lives too!!
Turn on the music
When was the last time you actually tuned up and down the dial or plugged in your iPod or listened to an awesome CD? Next time someone pulls up beside you at a light, let them hear you singing along to your favorite tune….it sure beats looking like a doofus with a Bluetooth device wedged into your ear looking like Captain Kirk.
Build some time into your day for you. Go for a mid-day walk or go to the gym. Better yet, get some play time in with your kids…that can be more physically exhausting then any time spent at the gym!! Grab a coffee and actually stop to drink it…read a book, or a magazine article you have been dying to read for some time.
Let your kids be kids. Would it be so bad if they didn’t grow up to be professional tennis playing, karate-kicking piano players? Wouldn’t it be just as beneficial to let them play with their friends or spend time with their siblings and parents? Don’t eliminate programming to develop a skill or interest….just reduce it. Your doing yourself a favor too!
Spend time with the ones you love. A pre-planned “family night” seems forced and unnatural. I assume you married your mate because out of love and affection. I assume you decided to start a family because you actually wanted kids….to nurture them and love them….AND SPEND TIME WITH THEM!! Don’t miss out!
These are not life-transforming actions…but they are minor shifts that will allow you to slow down, breathe and enjoy life at a much slower pace. What was that story about the tortoise and the hare??