My ego craves instant satisfaction ー it wants to go fast.
One of the counterintuitive life lessons I have experienced (both personally and professionally) is that sometimes we must give ourselves permission to go slow, in order to go fast.
Going Slow Can Be A Superpower
I was reminded of this lesson recently, while brainstorming new startup ideas.
Perhaps too much of my self identity is tied to the idea of being an entrepreneur. Having recently stepped away from last company, my ego has been screaming for me to move onto my next thing. I absolutely hate having to answer: ‘I’m figuring things out’ when someone asks me: what’s next? As a result, I have been putting tons of pressure on myself to come up with a new startup idea.
I did take some time off, but I don’t think it was of the proper depth. With disconnecting, it’s quality over quantity. Tony Robbins is famous for helping people change states
. Likewise, what I needed was to temper my ego and allow myself the space to simply be, unencumbered by the pressure of creativity.
“All of humanity’s problems stem from his inability to sit quietly in a room alone.” – Blaise Pascal
A Quiet Mind Is An Open Mind
Ryan Holiday makes a similar argument in Stillness Is The Key
. Archery master Awa Kenzo never taught students to deliberately aim and shoot to hit a target. Instead, Kenzo knew mastery came only by learning the concept of detachment.
I like deliberateness. My default is to push: research, study, keep moving forward in what I perceive to be progress. But it had not occurred to me that in slowing down and disconnecting, I could find the key to discovering my next idea.
As a result of this new line of thinking I’ve decided to put a temporary pause on my ambitions and am trying to be open to experience of a new context. We’ll see where it leads, but it feel great to have given myself permission to breathe and enjoy the moment.
Perhaps the same strategy can be helpful to you.