I was exhausted and uninspired. This was the time leading up to my hypothyroid diagnosis in July 2010. Exercise was becoming less frequent and my enthusiasm for work projects plummeted. I was slowing down, feeling ineffective. Why? Perhaps my body had just caught up with my mind, where all of the changes of the past five years still reeled.
Between 2005-2010, change pushed me forward: I bought a condo in Center City, met and dated Carlos long-distance (sometimes feeling like I spent more time on Amtrak), went to nutrition school in New York City, started my health counseling practice while working a full-time corporate job, quit that stable corporate job, started graduate school, and got engaged.
So when my integrated doctor suggested slowing down to heal by taking a semester off from graduate school and cutting back the non-stop devotion to my practice, I was relieved—and terrified. Slowing down isn’t about slowing down. It’s about trust. For my clients, this may mean saying no to endless family requests or trusting their work capabilities enough to enjoy a lunch break away from their desk. For others, it’s embodying that the best way to show your daughter her self-worth is to cultivate yours. Setting boundaries risks disappointing people and being judged. You walk through the fear of finding out who likes you for your being, not your doing.
Again, slowing down is not about slowing down.
Slowing down is Spanx for your soul, shaping you not with fabric, but with confidence. Operating at a more comfortable pace says, I’ll be fine and I’m worth it. It says, how about you meet me halfway? Is it any wonder that our stomachs—the self-confidence chakra area—are the most “over-extended” place for most of us?
Now I’ve never been accused of being a wallflower. And after three and a half years of embracing the empowerment that comes from self-employment, had never been more self-assured. However, this new work of slowing down required a more complete definition of confidence. One I never learned about from within a culture addicted to speed. I needed to learn to trust my being, not my doing. In practical terms, it meant trusting I could still pay my mortgage. It also included delaying my graduation and thus my timeline to start a family. But just like my clients discover genuine relationships nourish versus drain, and work quality soars with a focused and energized mind, slowing down enables you to go faster.
With some skepticism and fear, I followed my doctor’s orders. The year that transpired was magical, and not just because I was planning my wedding. My clients achieved incredible feats. I had a project idea that will transform the way people understand weight-loss (I’ll be sharing those details in the coming months!). My group work caught momentum. I had energy to workout again and my moods soared. I had time for my friends. I rediscovered fun, just for fun. My business did better. I went down two clothing sizes without trying. My emotional and physical core were the most defined they had ever been in my life. Most importantly, a spotlight shined on the dark place in my life that had been subconsciously sabotaging me. I know understood action doesn’t always mean progress.
Slowing down is the foundation of well-being. The body can only heal in a relaxed, rest and repair state. Enjoying life was what allowed my dietary tweaks and environmental detoxification to take effect. In homeopathy, the dis-ease is the cure. My hypothyroid was slowing me down and, in reality, that was the cure. With my thyroid fully functioning again, I’ve embraced that I fully function in a less is more state-of-being.
Speeding through life sabotages your well-being and wardrobe. In my upcoming Truce with Food program, you’ll learn the effect of speed on your metabolism. The more you transform into a human being, not a human doing, the more comfortable all of your Spanx will be.
We start in one week. One spot remains.