Every day, I remind myself to slow down and breathe. I start taking a few deep breaths and then I promptly forget and go right back to being fast-paced Phil. It’s maddening! What’s even more disconcerting is that taking a long, deep breath feels foreign to me. That bothers me. A lot. I want to slow down my pace, slow down my rhythm, slow down my life and be fully present. I know how important it is to take in enough oxygen and to be, as Paramahansa Yogananda wrote, calmly active and actively calm.
Just a few years ago, I was living a calm, peaceful life. Then a gust of busyness blew me off course and I haven’t yet found my way back, even though I know that living a spiritual life is inconsistent with moving and thinking at warp speed.
I came across a quote in a magazine article that nailed it: “A wise man never rushes.” It makes perfect sense—when you rush, when your mind is racing, you lose focus and you no longer are in the moment. Acting slowly and deliberately allows you to keep your awareness high and stay attuned to the divine current.
The author of the article wrote that, the morning after he read this quote, he tested the theory by moving as slowly and deliberately as he could, focusing all his concentration on what he was doing at that moment. He was shocked at the result. Instead of rushing like a mad man to get out of the house and then furiously pedaling his bike to get to high school on time, sweaty and frenzied, he dressed, ate breakfast, enjoyed a leisurely ride to school and made it to his homeroom—in a peaceful state of mind—with time to spare. He was amazed. But today, years later, he still can’t figure out why he went right back to his frenetic routine the very next day as if that peaceful, leisurely morning had never happened.
I think I understand why. Even when presented with irrefutable evidence, it seems counterintuitive that you can save time by slowing down. It’s hard to wrap your mind around that. But it’s true. When I rush around to make sure I get someplace on time, my thoughts become scattered and I overlook important details, bump into furniture and knock things over. The net result? I lose time instead of saving it. But it’s so hard to slow down! Even when I know it will save time, preserve my peace of mind and allow me to get more done.
The solution is simple—but that doesn’t mean it’s easy. I need to train myself to take longer, slower breaths. I need to meditate more. And I need to once again trust that I have all the time in the world.
ABOUT PHIL BOLSTA
Through God’s Eyes: Finding Peace and Purpose in a Troubled World, is a road map for living a more peaceful, beautiful life. It’s the one book that explains how dozens of spiritual principles interact, how to weave them together into a cohesive worldview, and how to practically apply this spiritual wisdom to daily life.
Who will benefit from reading Through God’s Eyes?
Anyone who is on a spiritual path, or wants to start one.
Anyone who loves life, or wants to learn how to.
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SEE EVERY MOMENT AS A GIFT
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Phil’s eBook, The Logic of Living a Spiritual Life: Supporting a Life of Faith Through Logic and Reason, is now available for 99 cents.
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In this eBook, you’ll find answers to questions like:
• What is the cornerstone of a spiritual life, and why?
• What is the secret to liberating yourself from other people’s judgments and expectations?
• How do you reconcile the “free will vs. Divine Will” conundrum?
• Why is there an exception to “Everything happens for a reason”?
Those who worship logic instead of God are only half right. Not only is it logical to believe in God and to live a faith-based life, the existence of a loving, benevolent God that governs all creation is perhaps the only systematic worldview that explains every aspect of life.
Phil is also the author of Sixty Seconds: One Moment Changes Everything, a collection of 45 inspiring, life-changing stories from prominent authors and thought leaders he interviewed. The roster of storytellers includes Wayne Dyer, Deepak Chopra, Neale Donald Walsch, Caroline Myss, Larry Dossey, Rachel Naomi Remen, Bernie Siegel, Dean Ornish, and Christiane Northrup. Sixty Seconds has been translated into four languages: Italian, German, Spanish, and Portuguese. Reading this book is like spending a few minutes face to face with each of the contributors and listening to their personal stories.
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