Slow Down to Speed Up: The power of pausing in work, life and creativity – Episode 86

Podcast Cover Art. Susmitha in a black dress, laughing with joy. Text: The Feel Good Factor with Susmitha Veganosaurus. Episode 86. Slow Down to Speed Up: The power of pausing in work, life and creativity

An episode about the importance of slowing down, and how it helps us speed up after the pause. To work, live, and create at our highest potential. With clarity and renewed energy.

Listen on the embedded player below, or on your preferred podcast platform. If reading is your jam, then scroll down for the transcript. Enjoy! 🙂

“Ensure you take breaks in between. Force yourself to step away. Because believe me, when you do that, and you go back, you become a lot more productive. And you get a lot more done in a much shorter period of time.”

Susmitha Veganosaurus – The Feel Good Factor Podcast

If this is your first time here, I invite you to find out more about The Feel Good Factor Podcast. If you think this content can help someone, do share the episode with them. I’d also greatly appreciate a review on Apple Podcasts. Ratings and reviews help the show get discovered by more people who resonate with this kind of message.

Apple PodcastsCastBoxSpotifyAudibleYouTube
Subscribe on your favourite podcast player

Transcript of Slow Down to Speed Up

(gently edited for a better reading experience)

Hello lovely people. I trust your weekend started off great. Especially in India, because a lot of us, we probably have a long weekend planned connected to the holiday on Thursday.

What plans do you have for the weekend? Are you going to travel? Or just relax at home? Probably spend time with friends, family, or pampering yourself? Whatever it is, I hope you really have a great, great time and make very good use of the holiday. And the long weekend, if you are taking the extra day off.

I have a family event coming up. I’m gonna get to meet a lot of people I haven’t met in many years, and really looking forward to that. These are all really sweet people. And you know, with the lockdown we had for a few years, and generally otherwise life happening, all of us haven’t met at all and come together in such a long time. So this is going to be a fun thing. And I’m really, really looking forward to it.

I’m hoping to keep this episode short today so that I can be done with it pretty quickly, and then get it edited and posted and everything. So that then I can shut the computer down and take off for a few days, take off for the long weekend.

Incidentally, today’s topic is all about slowing down to speed up, and I know it sounds counterintuitive

What does that even mean? What do you mean slow down to speed up? The thing is, all of us need a pause. Sometimes we’re all going really fast and just in this mode of doing, doing, doing things. Without a pause, we kind of run out of steam.

Many times we either lose motivation and interest to keep going ahead and completely crash. Or we just keep going and you know, it’s not really good for our health.

We’re not even working at our highest potential when we are in this mode of constantly doing things

Whether it’s with work, or home, or just doing things for others, whatever it is, when you’re constantly in a mode of rushing and moving forward, you kind of lose track of being the best version of yourself. Which is why a nice pause, consciously slowing down, makes a world of difference.

This the reason we need to plan pauses for ourselves, because if we don’t plan it, if we don’t consciously put this into our calendar, and say, “okay, these are the times I will pause. These are the times through the day I will take a break, or days through the week where I will be taking off, and completely relaxing.” Or even through the month, or the year, whenever, if we don’t set aside time for ourselves, then we kind of tend to forget about it, because we get caught up with life and we just keep moving.

If you’ve been listening to the podcast for a while now, you probably know that on every Sunday of the week, I completely disconnect from the internet

I mean, I won’t call it a complete digital disconnection because I do watch TV and read books and stuff. But I do completely cut off from the internet. I turn off the net on my phone, I don’t touch the laptop, I don’t check any messengers/messages. Or don’t get onto social media or emails, or any of that.

I just completely stay offline, to the point that even if I feel tempted to Google something… and we’re all dependent on that, right? Like, the moment we have a question, we want to just look it up online. But even if I feel that temptation, I don’t do it on Sundays, because I’m like, “You know what, I can do it tomorrow if I need to. But today is the day for me to be off the internet.”

I’ve been doing this for a couple of years now. In fact, I spoke about this on episode 27 of the podcast, which was all about disconnecting from social media. Disconnecting digitally. I had just started off this journey of Sunday disconnection and had shared about it in great detail at that point of time.

And then, more recently, late last year, I did another episode about staying away from Instagram for a couple of months, and how beneficial that break was for me. That was episode 72. That’s so funny. I didn’t plan it that way.

But yeah, 27 and 72 – these are the two episodes on the show in which I speak in great detail about staying offline, about being disconnected digitally, and how beneficial it is

So listen to them. If this is something that interests you, and you’re wondering why you should do it, or how you should do it, then definitely listen to both those episodes, because you might get some ideas of how to ease into that. Because I know it’s not so easy to just jump into it always.

So anyway, every Sunday, I’m offline. And because of being offline, the beauty is, one is, my mind gets cleared up, I feel very peaceful. When you don’t have the internet, your distractions get cut down drastically. Otherwise, we’re distracted quite a bit even when we are conscious. And even when we say, “no, I won’t be on my phone a lot”, even then we get distracted quite a bit, just because we’re connected to the internet.

Completely disconnecting, completely cutting off, taking that break for a day, it refreshes my mind

The first benefit from that is it puts my mind in what Barbara Oakley calls “diffuse mode”.

So in diffuse mode, we aren’t focused on anything in particular. Instead, we are allowing our mind to just work its own magic in the background. And that is very important. Because there are so many places where we are stuck.

Whether we’re working on a project or whether it’s some life questions, we feel stuck in many areas, or some things are not moving forward. Or even, there’s a break in that creative flow. All those things occur, mostly because we’re in a hustle and fast moving pace. You know, our life is in that kind of mode.

But when we take that break, and relax and go into diffuse mode, it’s like magic

There are so many questions that you have where the brain just resolves it. And suddenly ideas start flowing. Inspiration starts coming out of nowhere. And then you get so creative, it’s really beautiful.

It takes a little bit of time because at first when you take that break, you feel a little bored, because you’re so used to reaching for your phone for everything. But it’s okay. You sit through that boredom. And on the other side of it is the inspiration.

You start doing things, living life in the real world instead of the online world. And you kind of change your focus from work just to being. That helps a lot.

When I do that on Sunday, on Monday when I come back, oh my I have so much more energy. And it’s kind of exciting to be able to get back to my phone, to check the messages, to check my email and everything.

But more importantly than that, it’s super exciting to get back to my podcast and to start working because I have all this fresh, new energy. And I take it and I pour it into the podcast. So it flows beautifully, so much of it.

That’s just one example of how slowing down helps me speed up, but I’m sure you can think of many areas in your life where this happens.

See if you have a habit of taking an afternoon nap. I don’t because I wake up a zombie if I do that, so it’s very rare. But also I sleep for long hours, and I wake up late in the morning, so that’s why.

But I know a lot of people wake up early. You know, you may have some commitments, or maybe you’re a morning person. For whatever reason, you wake up early, and just jump into your life and start working and doing things. At that point of time, you need that break in the afternoon.

And then, when you sleep, when you have that little nap, even if it’s for 20 minutes, half an hour, whatever, you had a nap, when you wake up, you have a new burst of energy to get through the second half of your day. Through the evening.

You’re more active, you’re walking around, it’s very different from what happens in the afternoon when you’ve started to crash a bit because you’ve been working so hard all day. And that evening refresh is so helpful.

This reboot that you get from having that nap is more powerful, even than having some coffee or tea in the middle of your day and continuing to stay awake and continuing to push yourself to keep going, to keep working

This is something a lot of us might be familiar with in some form or another. Either we do the afternoon naps ourselves. Or we have seen, you know, our parents, like our moms or dads or whoever, when we were young, having the habit of taking that afternoon nap and then coming back active in the evening.

So we have seen that and somewhere we are exposed to that. I’m sure you get the idea of what I mean.

In a long term plan, pausing also helps in many other areas

For example if you’re running a business, and throughout the year you’re working. Because it’s unlike working for someone else in a company where there are certain set holidays and stuff. If you’re running your own business, a lot of times we don’t take that holiday for ourselves, we’re just working through the year and continuing.

But sometimes you notice that if you take a break, or if there are certain areas of your business that you put on pause, that is the only way, those are the only places where new ideas come up. New shifts are inspired.

When you pause something, you realise how you can do certain things differently, or where some things may be outdated and you need a new, fresh perspective and an update on things. All these arrive only when you pause the certain areas of your business.

And of course, with school and stuff, we’ve seen this always, there are holidays for the children, right?

Actually, there’s so much we can learn from the way school is structured.

I know the education system, at least the normal, standard education system has its drawbacks. It’s not perfect in any way. But there are some very important takeaways from the kind of life that we used to live during our school days, which we can take away and apply to our current lives.

One of the parts of that structure is having holidays, right? We would have Christmas holidays, Dusshera holidays, Summer holidays. We would have at least three vacations through the year of varying lengths.

And whether you liked school or disliked it, the one thing that most of us had in common was after a long vacation, we actually looked forward to going back to school. Whether it’s to meet friends, or because we’ve got new books, or whatever reason, right?

Depending on the kind of vacation we’ve had, we do look forward to going back to school. And then those first few weeks we have a fresh mind, and this enthusiasm to learn new things. You know, a little bit more curiosity is there than thinking, “oh I have to do this.”

Those breaks really served us, that is something we can take away and apply to our lives currently

Even if you are a person who leads a flexible life, I’m talking about entrepreneurs, or creative people like artists and stuff. Where we build our own lives, we have our own timetables.

And especially people like us, we tend to just go into the flow, and when the flow is happening, just keep doing things, and be in the flow constantly. But we definitely need to be conscious of this and take these breaks.

When we take these breaks, when we slow down completely, step away and have that pause, there’s always newfound energy and newfound inspiration when we come back to the work, come back to the flow

Finally, coming back to the whole digital thing, I’ve noticed that… of course, now I don’t have notifications on thankfully, I’ve let go of that habit completely… but if I get into an app, and you know, I’m sure this happens to all of us…

We’re thinking, “I need to message a friend right now about this specific thing.” But you open the app, and then you see all these different messages waiting for you in various groups or private messages and stuff. And somehow you just get pulled into it, one after another, into another, into another.

Then you’ll forget about why you even got in there in the first place, right? Because you’re so distracted. At those times, I’ve noticed for myself, for the life of me, sometimes I can’t remember why I entered the app.

So I turn off the phone and just keep it aside. you know, just a couple of breaths, that pause, and I’m able to remember, “this is why!”

That pause, even in short, little moments, in situations, has so much value in so many areas of our life

So yeah, I just wanted you to consider this seriously, about slowing down. Especially in the worst times when you feel there’s a lot of work. There’s a lot of pending stuff to achieve to get done. Those are the times in particular, that we think we have to keep doing things and get it all done, and only then we need to take a break.

But that is totally the wrong way of going about it!

Ensure you take breaks in between, force yourself to step away

Because believe me, when you do that, and you go back, you become a lot more productive. And you get a lot more done in a much shorter period of time.

Before I sign off, I wanted to tell you about a few free workshops that I’m planning to conduct over the coming weeks and months. I have an idea for some workshops that I want to do, and I’m going to announce these workshops first on my newsletter, The Feel Good Tribe.

If this is something that interests you, the workshops will be about various topics

Some about, well, feeling good. And some will be related to business, and some related to veganism. So it’s a big mix and match of things of various areas of interest that I have.

I have all these ideas in my head, and I want to just do workshops on them. So if you’d like to be notified about these, then sign up to my newsletter to get on board. It would make me so happy to meet my Feel Good Factor listeners online, you know. Get to interact with you through these workshop sessions.

So sign up for the newsletter and then when I announced the workshops do join up

I’m doing this for free initially for various reasons. One is that I’m beta testing this live workshop feature on the platform that I have my online academy. The academy is called Learn with Veganosaurus.

I need to beta test the features that’s why I’m doing it for free, so that, you know people can attend and test out the features for me and let me know how the experience is for them.

But also, it’s been a long time since I’ve conducted online workshops and events. And I feel like just starting off with some free events will get me back into the flow of doing more of them once again.

These are the reasons why these workshops are free for the first set of them. So yeah, just sign up to the newsletter. And then when I announce the workshops, sign up to them too. I look forward to meeting you all online. All right, take care.

Transcribed using Otter

Susmitha Veganosaurus

Shorth haired Indian lady, beaming a wide smile. Flowers in the background. Vegan business coach and chef Susmitha Veganosaurus

“I’m a Spiritual Vegan Multi-Passionate Entrepreneur. I read voraciously, find humour in most things, and believe kindness and authenticity can make this world a happier, loving place.

If my content resonates with you, join my free newsletter where I share Life and Business Tips, Vegan Hacks, Holistic Guidance, and more.

Vegan cuisine and holistic business building are my two biggest passions. If you’re looking for guidance with vegan cooking, or want to grow your conscious business with joy and fulfilment explore ways we can work togetherhere.”