The Unexpected Struggle to Slow Down
Something I didn’t expect after quitting my job was the monumental struggle to slow down.
I found it impossible to relax even though I knew I was leaving - it was as if I had conditioned my brain to constantly race at 200mph. Fine for a racoon driving a Ferrari, not fine for me.
None of my go-to relaxation methods had any impact: ❌ Yoga was No-ga. ❌ Music was Lose-ic. ❌ Meditation was more like Medi-agitation. ❌ Drawing was Flaw-ing.
Worst of all, I hadn’t realised how absolutely exhausted I was despite my strict efforts at calendar management and setting boundaries.
I began to worry about this spilling over into my next job. If I can’t ‘switch off,’ I can’t ‘switch on’ when my new team needs me, and I pride myself on being emotionally and physically available for my team.
That’s when I found photography—a perfect blend of moderate intellectual engagement and a gentle pathway to mindfulness. It’s like I had looked at the area around me a hundred times but never actually seen it before.
Thanks to remote work, I could easily step outside and engage in mindful photography with my iPhone on a break in an area I knew well.
And I started to feel so much better for it.
If you find yourself stuck in 10th gear, a new and slightly challenging activity might be the mental break you need to get some creative rest.
❓Have you experienced this kind of difficulty winding down in a job, and if so, how did you deal with it?
Come talk to me about it on LinkedIn