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Slowing Down to Speed Up

The Integram: an Integral Enneagram of Consciousness;  a model of consciousness, including all aspects, for designing practical paths of personal development and evolution.

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Slowing Down to Speed Up
(click for podcast) (7:09 min.)

Many of us learned things in childhood that we’ve since forgotten or ignore. Whether we pay attention to them or not, they remain in play and have an impact. One thing we learn early on from countless fables, anecdotes, parables, and mythology is this paradoxical truth that we need to slow down to speed up. Of course this makes no sense on the face of it, so we tend to blow it off as not being applicable to real life. That’s a mistake. If we’re looking for practical applications, we can check in with the U.S. Navy SEALs’ motto:

Since it appears that the nature of the Universe is filled with paradox, it may be time to look at our dualistic filters. Dualism certainly makes things simpler, and we like simpler. Of course accuracy might be even better, so we may have to make an occasional foray into the land of (shudder) details. Once again, we know that “God is in the details,” but we turn our backs on that and opt for fast and simple more often than not. Why? We’re in a hurry. Why? Do we even ask ourselves? Maybe “rushing” is a great place to start.

Fables and Parables Have a Purpose
It’s been said that when information is combined with experience, it becomes wisdom. We can learn from our own experiences - or not. We can also learn from other people’s experiences or not, and learning from theirs’ can be a great time saver. To borrow from another old saying, why re-invent the wheel?

When a certain theme shows up for hundreds, maybe thousands of years, it becomes harder to ignore the lesson to be learned. This is one of the great things about fables, parables, mythology, and so on. A theme could be just as much a part of daily life in Aesop’s time as in ours, and the learned wisdom can be handed down to us. We don’t have to learn the lesson the hard way; through our own experience.

Let’s look at a couple obvious perspectives on our theme. The story of the Tortoise and the Hare is pretty familiar to most of us. There are several sub-lessons woven throughout the story, such as “not getting so confident that you don’t keep going all out,” but the over-riding theme is that “slow and steady wins the race.” Unfortunately we figure, “yeah, but if the hare didn’t take a nap, he’d have won,” and dismiss the lesson. Then rushing to get out of the house, we forget important papers, keys, or spill coffee on ourselves while multi-tasking. This inevitably eats up more time than if we’d slowed down just enough to be more conscious and intentional. Especially if you have to go back in the house and change your outfit, or you’ve locked yourself out, or both.

Another favorite expression of mine is: “measure twice and cut once.” It takes just a little more time to slow down and double-check before you take an action that will require far more time and resources to re-do. Ben Franklin’s “Poor Richard’s Almanac” advised that “a stitch in time saves nine.” How often have you thought you didn’t have time to fix something right now, and paid triple in both time and money later?

Increasing Effectiveness
We’ve brought up some of the downside of rushing yourself, and hurrying through things, without even mentioning the quality of your experience. As quality is incredibly subjective, measurement is tricky, so I’m going to stick with the more easily seen metrics of your effectiveness. Rather than just looking at the negatives of rushing, let’s look at the positive affect you can have on your life by slowing down just enough to find your natural “perfect pace,” and the beat of your own drummer.

In virtually every sport, one of the top techniques for success is something called “slowing time.” Anyone who’s ever swung a golf club, baseball bat, or tennis racket knows that the more you try to kill the ball, the worse the shot. Taking the time to prepare, visualize, and smoothly swing through the ball gets incredible results.

You know that you have plenty of personal experience to back up the old wisdom, and still we’re all guilty of blowing that knowledge off when we’re in a hurry. We don’t hold on to that lesson, and pay for it over and over again. Maybe if we can stay a little more conscious and in the moment, we might remember what we know. We can take a few seconds to save hours. We can listen to another person more fully, and with more attention, because we’re not rushing off in our heads. We can avoid misunderstandings that waste time. We can give others the gift of our full attention, enriching our relationships, and creating depth and sustainability. We can do things once, without errors, giving us back more time to do more (if we want to.) We can also fully experience our own lives, rather than the blur from the window of our speeding train.

Want to learn more about how to become the best you possible? How your communication can hold you back or catapult you forward? Come visit the web site, or better yet, contact me and see how we can design a program to fit your needs and desired outcomes.

     - Ian J. Blei


June Offer -

Slowing down enough to not make mistakes or skip over important details takes a bit of courage and faith that the process works.

I'm offering 3 complimentary sessions ("how do I do this?") to the first 3 people (who haven't already worked with me) who email me this month's secret word: "Smooth"

Grab a spot on the calendar, and don't worry about the 30 minute limit; I'll automatically extend it to an hour.


He combines his extensive knowledge of integral theory, the Enneagram, and neuroscience, in a seamless way (truly a Grand Unifying Theory of Everything), and helps you apply this greater understanding to whatever matters to you. He helps you build the trellis which you can hang any flower on that you choose.." - P.R., - S.F.

Each session is normally a $285.00 value, and will be worth much more to you in life-changing ways.  Good luck! Click to Schedule.


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Ian Blei,
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Kind Ambition is about you having the tools to slide over to the driver’s seat of your own life.  Circumstances will always be changing, seemingly thwarting our plans, but we don’t have to be  thrown around by them. You can be in charge of your choices and actions more than you might imagine - yet.


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