Updated: Dec 22, 2022
Injecting urgency into a situation that does not require it is a sure fire way to create pain and stress in your life. The pace of our world and the social profile most of us all have only intensifies an urge inside of us to present the best side of ourselves. This desire is natural. It is wired into us. We all want to look good and fit into our world and our peer groups. But the unhealthy need to appear more or different than we actually are is a real problem if we cannot overcome it.
People somehow think being busy or unavailable is a sign of importance and success. So they pretend that they need to "check their schedule" to see if they can make lunch with a friend. Or they pretend they are in a hurry to go somewhere to give the impression of urgency and therefore importance or social status.
This tendency is only being amplified with our ever changing social media connections to the rest of the world. People are judging the quality of someone else's life based on their Instagram or TikTok content. This pushes everyone into a "keeping up with the jones'" mentality. For you younger readers, that is a reference to the need to make sure that you have the latest "new" thing because your neighbor has it.
To overcome this very real tendency we MUST slow down. We end up rushing to get miniscule tasks done like walking to the car or parking lot simply to get there 5 seconds faster. Five seconds will not make a difference to much of any outcome unless you happen to be an EMT or an emergency room doctor.
Injecting this false sense of urgency into our lives literally creates chemical and hormonal imbalances in our bodies. Increased cortisol, the stress hormone, is unhealthy and causes problems ranging from weight gain to heart arrhythmia.
Not only is false urgency unhealthy for our bodies, it is unhealthy for our self image, and emotional balance. Always needing to compare oneself to another is not a good indicator of your own self image and sense of self.
This tendency to rush something is also one of the largest ways to make a task take LONGER. You end up making two or three or more mistakes trying to do something too quickly than if you you slowed down and did it more completely the first time. The old adage "measure twice cut once" is absolutely true.
Learning to look, REALLY look into why we need to get something done and the importance of the outcome is the first step into learning how to apply the "slow down, take it easy not fast" approach.
So next time you find yourself rushing through the grocery store, driving too fast, cutting people off on the road, or simply setting up lunch with a friend, think about the things in your life that really matter. Loved ones, your physical and emotional health and the way you treat a stranger. These things are what really matter. When you rush through life worrying about something that will, literally, be forgotten in a few days, you only end up hurting yourself.
Slowing down and taking a real inventory of how important certain things are in our lives is important. We get to the better outcome much more quickly if we slow things up and do them properly based upon the real value of that outcome. Slow is Fast.