There was a time when New York was the ‘city that never sleeps’ – although, now it seems like we live in a world that never sleeps. The glorification of ‘the grind’ has caused people to aim for a state of perpetual motion, putting rest on the back burner. We often, forget to slow down and enjoy what we have while we have it.

There are great benefits to slowing down which can lead us to a sense of satisfaction both in and outside of work. Slowing down is not to be confused with procrastination and should be dealt with maturely. There will be times in life when slowing down is not an option. It’s your responsibility to prioritize rest during the time allotted.

Slowing down can be appropriate in the following situations:

Completing tasks – Take your time when completing tasks, no matter how big or small. It’s not a race.

Interviewing – Speak calmly and professionally. Provide insightful answers and take time to ask questions. Being too quick to punch can be a turn-off.

Lunchtime – Use this time for yourself. Whether it be taking a walk, reading a book, or getting a coffee, slow down, be present, and enjoy.

Some additional ways to consciously try to slow down:

Practice monotasking – If you’re someone participating in ‘the grind’ you’re also probably frequently multitasking. Multitasking is not only unproductive but can also lead to feeling overwhelmed and burned out. This is a behavior that can take a lifetime to unlearn. However, when we switch our focus to one thing at a time (mono-tasking) we’re more likely to give undivided attention to what’s important instead of spreading our energy across multiple things.

Set small rest goals – Even if it’s only for 15-20 minutes, allowing yourself time to slow down and rest is a goal worth working toward.

Why should you allow yourself time to slow down?

A more obvious reason for slowing down is to refrain from making frequent mistakes. If you’re multi-tasking, you’re unable to give the attention deserved to the task at hand and are more likely to make mistakes.

Additionally, slowing down will help you differentiate what tasks are priority vs. which ones aren’t. If you’re a frequent multi-tasker you likely fall victim to impulse, often completing what seems appealing at the moment rather than a high priority. Slowing down will allow you to honor the difference and provide you with an undivided perspective on the task at hand.

When we slow down, we encourage our minds to act with intention instead of impulse. Make a conscious effort to slow down and give your undivided attention where necessary.

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