“Money is attracted to speed”: a very common mantra among marketing and business gurus…
It essentially means that the faster you act and react, the more successful you’ll be in business. And the more money you’ll make.
There’s definitely some truth to it, but things are not quite so simple always as black and white.
So if you want a healthy freedom business, here is some “Alternate Truth” for ya:
We live in a world defined, driven and judged by speed.
If you observe people in a typical global 21st century city like London, you’ll soon notice they walk fast, work fast, talk fast, drink fast and probably even fuck fast.
Of course these are not natural behaviours. But people are surreptitiously pushed to become like that: they are constantly asked to become more and more productive, efficient and to multitask. Society’s expectations are high.
Our brains themselves are seriously fucked up.
No wonder why: we browse internet with 10 tabs open, speed read books in 10 mins, and express our deepest thoughts in 140 characters.
Who in their right mind would do that? This is not what millions of years of human evolution programed us for.
You might be wondering what’s wrong with that. After all, when you roam through your typical speedy day, you don’t always feel like something’s wrong.
It became clear to me something was really wrong …when I realised I couldn’t count until 10!
I was one of these speedy guys working in the City of London.
And also a serious Internet addict (click, click, click, click … and click!).
I kind of felt something was wrong with me, with my mind and body. But I couldn’t figure out exactly what.
Until I tried meditation for the first time.
It was just a simple exercise: close your eyes, fully focus on feeling and observing your breath, and count the exhalations up to ten. If you get distracted and lose focus, start the count back from one.
I’ll tell you what: my mind was so messed up at that time that I never managed to count to 10. I always had a thought, an itch or something else that would distract me.
I was so out of sync with my natural flow and my mind was spinning so fast all the time that I couldn’t even have the patience to count till 10 with my eyes closed.
It wasn’t that surprising after all: I couldn’t focus on anything for longer anyway at that time. All I could do was sleep fast, eat fast, work fast, drink fast and sleep again (fast). It was really bad.
I call that the speed disease. If you experienced similar symptoms please share them in the comments section below this post, I’d love to hear how you feel about that.
Anyway, my point: money might be attracted to speed, but speed is not sufficient to tune yourself to the money-making rhythm.
Why slowness is as important as speed
Even if you don’t feel you’re suffering from the speed disease, here is a simple experience to try:
Introduce a slow moment in your life, even if it’s for one minute a day.
Slowing down is not only about giving your mind a well-deserved rest.
When you slow down you start observing things differently.
You see more things. New things.
Your thoughts become much clearer.
Your mind gets much sharper.
You’re getting new, better ideas.
You basically uncover a whole new reality you just can’t see when you live at high speed.
It’s a bit like slowing down after driving your car at high speed: you suddenly see a lot more stuff through the window.
So give it a shot: try to slow down.
Even if it is for a week, with one minute per day slots, it will be sufficient to unlock your fifth dimension.
Create this slow moment where your brain has the time to truly observe and think more deeply.
Whatever method works for you will do it. If you’re unsure how to start, try to meditate for a minute each day (if you’ve never meditated before Headspace is a good place to start).
Or just spend a moment watching the beauty of the rain falling as I did earlier today. I even shot a video for you (I’m in Costa Rica now and it’s the rainy season)
Try it, and report back here what your slow moment did for you and how it felt.
Peter Fritz says
I tried Headspace for about a month but fell off the wagon once convention season hit (I organise three conventions a year – right now, as a matter of fact). I have to get back to it because it really does help. I find long drives in the country on my own to be very meditative, too, but that’s harder to organise – especially right now.
But thanks to you and the Costa Rican rainy season, I just enjoyed 26 seconds of slow time. :-)
Thanks Peter! I can’t meditate too much on these Costa Rican roads though: they’re beautiful but too dangerous ;)
Quinn Anderson says
Yeah, I’m a living example of doing things too fast and ending up ruining the whole thing. I had to learn this lesson the hard way though.
First, I failed a fully-funded scholarship to study in Korea because I rushed into it and applied only 2 days after the open-call announcement got out. I was naively thinking that the sooner my application reached the board, the better. Later, I wasted money on creating a website because I hadn’t spent enough time researching. The result was that my blog violated the branching process of a large company.
Wish this post has woken me up sooner…