Say No to the Go Go Go ApproachSep 12, 2023
Feeling a bit depleted at the moment? It might be a good time to take a step back and see if you’ve been honouring your health and wellness over the last little while. Perhaps, like so many others, you’re in a GO GO GO mindset, and haven’t been able to shake it all year. Self care is rarely factored into this kind of thinking. On the contrary, it’s often seen as taking away from precious time to tick off a to-do list. I’m here to gentle shake up your thinking around this.
Setting Incredibly High Standards
A GO GO GO lifestyle is closely linked to the exceptionally high standards and expectations we set for ourselves. Somehow we've aligned 'busy' with a form of success and burnout has, as a result, become a common health concern. This kind of mindset is closely linked to the idea that we’re never doing enough with our time. Unrealistic goals are just that: unrealistic. You don’t have to commit to being in spinning class at 5am for five mornings in a row, beating yourself up if you miss one day because your little one has a runny nose. Lowering your expectations and being more gentle with yourself can be just as fruitful, even if you “only” step outside and walk around the block three times a week.
A long-term GO GO GO lifestyle will ultimately lead to a chronic sense of fatigue, which is guaranteed to lead to burnout at some stage. You’re operating from a cup that’s half empty (or less), which will start to spill into the various roles you have to play in the world. Your relationships will be affected, it’s harder to keep focused (and enjoy!) your work, and eventually everything comes tumbling down. Not being able to detach from a full steam way of life can also be crippling from a mental health perspective when you get sick and your body forces you to slow down. Practise it while you’re healthy to make recovery periods easier later on in life.
The Impact on Creativity
Aside from the tangible effects an excessively busy life has on your body and mind, it’s also sure to be a creativity and joy killer. When you’re running on empty it’s nearly impossible to be creative, if only when it comes to how you plate up your food or the way you arrange flowers on the kitchen table every week. You’re allowed to just be sometimes, without having to worry about tomorrow, next month or next year.
Slow, Slow, Slow
When you start to fall into the GO GO GO approach to life, start by saying NO NO NO. Better still, choose going SLOW SLOW SLOW. A slower pace of life has nothing to do with not meeting deadlines or getting to the things you need to. It simply gives you the capacity to look after yourself while doing things at a more rational pace. You’ll be able to enjoy things a lot more when you’re aware of what you’re doing, and whether the activities add any form of fulfilment to your life. Don’t let a fast-paced lifestyle grab hold and take charge of how you experience life. Know your limits, turn the tide where possible, and watch your tank fill up from one day to the next.
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