One of our favourite mantras when teaching Thai Massage, is to “Slow It Down”. As we guide students through new postures and techniques, we are constantly encouraging them to slow down their pace, gradually explore range of motion, and ease into the application of massage pressure. We place emphasis on slowing down, because it allows us to bring our mindfulness, compassion, and informed intuition into each part of our session. We want to express metta toward our clients, and also toward ourselves, in order to offer a high quality treatment experience in every interaction.
This is truly a beautiful interchange, and when balanced with each of Navina’s four Foundational Principles, allows each session to be beneficial to both giver and receiver. But there are several times when we forget that this concept of slowing it down can also have a huge impact on our own daily lives, outside of the treatment area.
If we are honest with ourselves, many of us find that the fast pace of life often leaves us feeling overwhelmed and trying to catch up with or ‘stay on top of’ daily tasks and responsibilities. We tend to pack our days with thought, plans, and activities that either populate or attempt to address our ever-growing To Do lists; while at the same time attempting to experience the peace and joy of being present in the current moment.
My advice here is no different than the classroom: Slow…It…Down.
Although it can be challenging, each of us (myself included) can find great benefit in slowing the pace of our hectic lifestyles, mindfully exploring the opportunities and challenges we are presented with, and easing ourselves into any necessary or desired areas of change. Just like in our Thai Yoga Therapy practice, this act of slowing down will help us bring a conscious awareness and informed intuition to the various situations we face in our daily lives, and give us the important opportunity to extend loving kindness and compassion toward ourselves, outside of your treatment environment.
With these thoughts in mind, let’s each think of ways we can begin to weave the practice of “Slowing It Down” into our ongoing experience of life, as we pursue our own unique goals, maintain healthy relationships, and positively affect the lives of those around us!