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Rushing

Question: Having to rush is punishing… is it also a sure sign that I'm "asleep"? How does rushing overtake me so easily? What can I do to deliberately slow down when the urge to hurry seems overwhelming?

Answer: Every person knows what it feels like to be carried off by an anxious state, so you decide: when some anxiety comes along and takes over your life -- are you an awake inwardly centered person -- or are you an unconscious outwardly driven man or woman? Which are you? That you're outwardly directed is pretty obvious. Why? Because that anxious state could not exist without your false belief that who you are -- your well-being -- is connected to something happening exterior to yourself. And now this mistaken idea is driving you, compelling you to get this thing fixed or that situation resolved right now, because once you have, you'll be back in a peaceful place. As long as you take yourself as someone who has something to lose because of your identification with any temporary exterior condition or circumstance, you will remain someone subject to every outer condition.

By deliberately slowing yourself down when everything in you seems to be screaming "Rush," you will become inwardly awake. You'll become conscious of yourself in a new way. For the first time you'll understand that these anxiety attacks have nothing to do with what didn't get done, or with what "might happen," but that their painful place dwells within a belief-packed self you're living from that's convinced if you don't answer the situation it says has caused your anxiety, you'll end up losing something valuable. This new kind of prayer-in-action changes your perception of yourself by turning your attention around to where the real problem, and the real solution, exists: within you. This simple but powerful prayer will help you make the transforming transition to find your life inside of you instead of forever looking for a way to fix it by struggling outside of you.

Excerpted from The Lost Secrets of Prayer, Pages 115-116

Question: Are there some specific exercises I can work with to develop self-command, especially the ability to step out of hurried feelings?

Answer: Self-command begins with being able to choose your own direction in life. And whether you're caught in the raging current of a white-water river, or being swept along by a flood of invisible thoughts and feelings, one fact remains: Like it or not, you're going where that current goes. You have no real choices as long as you're under its influence. Learning to step out of the rush is the same as learning how to step into your own life.

Allow the following exercise help you to slow down your life and show you that your Real Nature never feels the need to rush any more than an eagle would try to swim across a lake to get to the other side.

Beginning this very moment, intentionally separate yourself from any rushing inner condition by voluntarily stepping out of it. How can this be done? Purposefully slow yourself down by acting to consciously reduce your usual speed. Here are several suggested ways to guarantee a good start.

  1. Walk over to get your cup of coffee at 50% your normal gait.

  2. Reach for the phone, your glass of water or your pen, at 75% your normal speed.

  3. Drive the speed limit (at all times), but especially when late for an appointment!

One practice I find particularly profitable, at home and in business, is to always pause a few seconds before I answer someone's question. This special conscious pause for self-awakening is invaluable because, as the old saying goes, "Only fools rush in!" So, whatever the occasion may be, choose the time and place to slow down, and then practice stepping out of the rush.

Now here's the secret behind how this unique exercise delivers new self-command: Slowing down helps you become aware of yourself in a new and higher way by creating contrast between your usual speed through life, and your now selectively slower one. This enhanced self-awareness empowers you to step out of the rush of your own surging thoughts and feelings by making you conscious of their flooding presence within you as being something that doesn't belong to you. Once this is clear, then you can choose your own direction in life. Step out of the rush by slowing down. Do it Now.

Excerpted from Design Your Destiny, Pages 48-50

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