Stop to smell the roses. In the hustle and bustle of the modern world, we do like to keep moving … growing …getting ahead. In fact, nowadays, many of us find comfort in constant motion, for example, taking care of a chore, a work problem, studying for an exam, driving kids to practices or visiting parents and elderly relatives to help them cope with their bills and other stresses.

The ability to stop momentarily is becoming more and more of an effort. Sitting down to pause momentarily and I’ll very quietly whisper…”rest and recover” is simply a bridge too far for many of us.

The upside is so much gets done…but are there downsides?

  • We are human and we do run out of energy …eventually
  • When we run out of energy in this way — it tends to be a large crash
  • It can be a bit of a roller coaster ride where we go hard or go home until we fall in a heap and the peaks and troughs tend to get deeper as the pattern is reinforced
  • It feels like we get a lot done and we feel good in the beginning but the sustainability of effort can be sacrificed


  • If we have the can do or action stations card in our deck … be aware & notice that it’s there
  • Practice letting go, or determining if this is a good or bad card…it’s a card
  • Consider acquiring an additional card…such as the rest or stop card
  • Gives you more options throughout the day…allows for more flexibility in responding to the day as it rolls out rather than playing the same card over and over

Have you tried to slow down in the past?

If you’ve read something about work/life balance or have acknowledged that rest is necessary you have probably given it a go…you might have noticed that as soon as you sit down the whispering starts:

“what about the washing, email, that assignment, meeting notes etc”,

“time for sitting later”,

“don’t be lazy”

and then you start to feel uncomfortable

a wash of agitation, knee jiggling, tummy rolling

heart rate might increase a little, or breathing alter

Together the ideas and feelings are often enough to finish the job of getting you up and moving again.

Later on in the day when we stop at the water cooler or coffee shop, we will inform those around us how uncomfortable it felt to sit down and sin of sins “do nothing”.

Having another go at slowing down

  • It takes practice…like learning anything…do it over and over and you will adjust…in effect develop the new habit
  • Keep early practice simple
  • Smelling Roses is one way to practice…notice if it has a scent or not….notice the strength of the scent…and if you want to be really splashy with time…notice what you can see on the rose such as colour, patterns, different features. If you can stop to smell the roses a couple of times a day after a month of having a go…you’re on your way
  • Roses can be substituted for anything that is of interest to you like a favourite drink, type of transportation, magazine, pet … simply stop, take a moment to focus, take in the detail one piece at a time.
  • If your mind tells you “there’s no time to waste”…test it out with “let’s wait and see.”

Stop to smell the roses

If you need help to stop and smell the roses, contact Carolyn Youren today.