Living in the fast lane: why I fast from these 3 things on a weekly basis
April 10, 2016 at 4:30 am
At times, I feel like I’m spinning in an earthly microwave. I want everything done fast and in a hurry. I take the toll road to get to my destination faster. I use the microwave to warm up my food because it’s faster than the stove. And despite how much or how little time I’ve spent developing an idea, I want it to come to fruition…faster.
In the midst of my need for speed, I’m often forced to a standstill. For instance, let’s talk traffic. In that pause, I take the opportunity to slow down my thoughts just enough to grab a moment of solace. I remember that those who go fast often get hurt while missing lessons and opportunities. Peace and simplicity are fleeting and pressure becomes the norm. In those moments of “hurry up and live,” we fail to experience the beauty of a bee retrieving nectar, a butterfly emerging from its chrysalis and other simplistic moments.
Although the preoccupation toward purposeful fulfillment is paramount like water is to someone deserted, how do you know what direction to move in if you’re not listening? How does a flower get a chance to bloom if not for the silence of the soil that nurtures it? As traffic starts to move, I realize I like the stillness. The reality is, slowing down to recharge and refocus is a choice. I’ve made the choice to incorporate intermittent fasting from a few things on a weekly basis. This process allows me to hear myself without the opinions of others that subconsciously affect my conscious decisions. While riding in this zone, I’m able to receive and adhere to the Divine communication I need to truly blossom in all aspects of my life. The more I fast, the more I free up the clutter of mind, body and spirit.
Here are the three things I fast from on a weekly basis that help me stay on task, on point, and on purpose:
A friend of mine who’s studying marketing in college told a few of us during casual conversation that there are engineers whose sole job is to create televisions that pick up on the vibration of your emotions based on how you react to certain ads. Yes, you heard me correctly, your emotions are collected in a database that can gauge how happy you were when you saw your favorite bag of chips on TV or how frustrated you became when you heard that the state of California was making it mandatory for parents to vaccinate their children in order to attend school. If televisions are indeed gauging my reactions, who knows if it’s giving me reactions as well? I know it sounds funny, but all jokes aside programming is designed to program you. If you’re spending copious amounts of time in front of the tube watching the finest of reality and crimes shows, don’t be surprised when crime becomes your reality. I refrain from watching TV more than a few days a week, and replace that time with reading, meditating, writing and physical activity with my little ones.
The perfect storm of opinion and ostentatiousness, self-promotion and self-expression, social media has become the international newspaper for the people, filled with the best and the not so great offerings of mankind, or so it’s perceived. The various social media outlets are an AMAZING tool for connecting with distant family and friends while learning about different schools of thought, products, and methodologies. Sometimes it’s just sufficient for a damn good laugh and an uplifting quote to get you through the day. Overconsumption of this potpourri does a number on my senses and admittedly, my sense of self and reality, if not measured. Not everything seen is real, and as a writer, coach, mother and most importantly a human, it’s critical for me to fast from social media at least once a week in order to have internal harmony and an extra couple of hours to cultivate organic, non-virtual connections with people. So much of what I (and admit it, you too) do is influenced by what I see and read, it’s imperative that I take the time not to be distracted by popular opinion in order to foster my own.
When people think of fasting from food, it’s automatically associated with a religious practice. But fasting, like religion, encourages a pause from the physical, so you can bond with the spiritual. Fasting not only helps stop the non-stop traffic imposed on your GI tract, but also the non-stop chatter of your mind. Fasting allows major ideas to be heard and doubt silenced. I typically fast from Sunday evening until Monday evening. Almost without fail, anytime I break fast after 24 hours, I’m deposited with an amazing idea and how to execute it, as if the pause refuels my senses. It is written that Jesus fasted for 40 days. His fortitude and faith were not only tested, but strengthened during his time without things of comfort — food included. Activist and comedian Dick Gregory has been an avid faster for years. He credits fasting for his sharp mind and good health well into his 80s, and even jokes that he’s outlived some of his doctors because of it. Going completely without food for 24 hours sounds like too much? Perhaps try doing a nutritious juice fast or a 12-hour fast for starters. The benefits will be equally fascinating.
Honesty has gotten me to the place I am now able to speak to you from. I was only able to implement fasting in my life after careful self-examination of what I needed to progress spiritually, and what was in the way of my progression, physically. My desire to constantly be on the go and in the mix took second place to my need for respite. The more I pause, the more I am able pick up momentum for what needs to be done. This momentum not only carries me through the fast lane but propels me to the finish line. I’d like to encourage you: The next time you feel in a rut, out of synch, or downright distracted, ask yourself what its time to pump the breaks on. This slight detour in thought may be your round-trip ticket into the fast lane.
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Sahsha Campbell-Garbutt is a mother, wife, inspirational writer, life coach and wellness advocate. Sahsha is CPR/AED certified and is currently studying to become certified in fitness instruction and exercise sciences. In addition to her devotion for wellness, she’s a long-standing member of the Screen Actors Guild. Sahsha’s writing has been published in Huffington Post, MindBodyGreen, Atlanta’s Creative Loafing, and Lennox and Parker Magazine. Sahsha is Co-Author of the best selling book, “20 Beautiful Women, Volume 3” and her book,“ Life and Light: 111 Motivations and Messages” will be released fall, 2016. Many enjoy her motivational quotes and writings on life and wellness on her blog. Follow her on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.