Do you dare slow down?

Do you dare slow down?

The last month has been interesting.  There have been escapes, changes, gaps and connections that were planned and unexpected.

What stuck out the most was what happened when I allowed myself to veer off the beaten path of routine.

Last weekend I got up considerably earlier than usual and spontaneously decided to go to the gym instead of going for a run.  Recently, going to the gym is new for me.  Anyway, I went and had a good workout.  On the way home, there was an unusual pull to stop off at our local park.  It's a beautiful park that I often say I should visit more often and never do.  The park is out of the way, it's past my home and going was an effort but I decided to go with the flow.

I went parked the car and headed into the park. It was a bit cool, so I started off walking at a brisk pace, not quite sure why I was in the park and wondering why I hadn't gone home.   I'll walk around once, get some steps in and head back, I thought to myself. 

I walked and started looking around.  I love people watching and the park was busy so I looked and slowed down a little.  I walked for a while and came to an ice cream van.  I was walking past with no intention, whatsoever of buying anything, when a waffle cone caught my eye.  I love waffle cones. And, I've not had a one for years.  I stopped and asked the lady how much the cone on it's own would be. 

Yes, a little random, I know, but that's all that I wanted.  She looked at me as though I was mad.  "It's the cost of an ice cream."  I explained that it was only the cone I was after.  She said repeated what she'd said. I reached for my card and held it out.  She stopped and looked at me. 

Perhaps it was my resolve or maybe the little bit of excitement and sense of mischief that was creeping in, having decided to do something as decadent as having a waffle cone on it's own, before midday (which is a thing over here by the way).  

I held out my card.  Nothing.  The the lady said" Don't worry about it. You can have the cone.  Call it your blessing for the day."  Maybe not a big deal to you, but I felt as though I'd won the lottery, winning! I thanked the lovely lady and went on my way. That waffle cone tasted amazing, perhaps because it had been so long, maybe because it was also a gift and a lovely gesture.  By now I was strolling. I had forgotten about my brisk walk back to the car. Life and that moment felt good.

I was by then walking around the lake in the park and was surrounded by birds and their babies.  There was an empty bench overlooking the lake and I sat down to enjoy the last of my cone.  Up until seeing the waffle cone I had been thinking about all the things I had to do during the day, the errands, the shopping, the calls.  It had fallen away.  I sat on the bench and I made a conscious note to enjoy the view and not reach for my phone.  The sun was warming me up nicely.  As i sat there thoughts of the to do list fell away and were replaced by nothing as I looked at the view and the people passing.

I won't bore you with any more details but what was supposed to be a quick visit ended up being an insightful, useful and actually product visit of over an hour.  I took some time to think about something that had been on my mind for a while that needed solving/resolving and guess what?  I found a solution and actually quite quickly and easily.  It gets better.  I also had an unexpected and what felt like a fully formed idea for new work come to me, pretty much without any effort or the usual involved process.

What's the point of all of this you may be wondering? Well firstly, if you've stayed with me, curious, frustrated or maybe even both wondering where this blog was going, well done. 

I consciously wrote this blog in a way that would encourage you to slow down and take in the happenings.  You may have skipped the detail, skim read the contents or stayed with me, patiently.  If it's the latter, well done.  More importantly, if it is, how did it feel?  I hope you feel like I felt, relaxed, open and maybe even a little excited about the possibilities of what was coming.  I love when things like this happen, and they've been happening quite a bit.  I won't bore you with the other things like this that have happened this month, but they've been quite a few.

The point is, I didn't want to slow down, I actually didn't even intend to slow down whilst I was there, but so many great things and gifts came from doing just that and accepting invitations to do things differently. This trip to the park may mark another phase for me, or if not, at least a reminder of where and how else I can get inspiration and solve problems beyond the usual, reliable and efficient ways that can and have inadvertently provided a one dimensional solution.  

The question I'll leave you with is;

Do you dare slow down? 

Do you dare follow the thoughts that sometimes make no sense and are inconvenient, if even for a moment?

I'll leave this here.

Got thoughts on this, had a similar experience, I'd love to know.  Share them in the comments below or email me at  


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