“Practice not-doing and everything will fall into place” – Lao Tzu
Years ago I read Lao Tzu’s quote and scoffed. Of course that’s what an ancient Chinese philosopher would say sitting in his zen garden not having to live in the real world.
Harsh? Maybe a little.
But I was overwhelmed, exhausted and needed some real world help. The idea of practicing “not-doing” was like a bad joke.
And in complete disclosure, I didn’t even know what the heck “not-doing” even meant? In my corporate world “not-doing” meant “not getting it done” and how was that going to help me.
So, I wrote off Lao Tzu and his philosophy with a “sounds nice, but I don’t have the luxury of slowing down.”
However, a seed was planted.
Fast forward 15 years. I am now a Master Life Coach. What do I think of Lao Tzu and his ancient philosophy now?
I humbly admit he has a lot of merit.
We live in a fast paced world full of disconnected individuals with unfulfilled dreams and unmet priorities. I have found that slowing down and connecting to what’s truly important is a good way to be really productive. And resting and relaxing is a smart way to recharge.
One of my main coaching philosophies is to slow down in order to find balance. Balance is not a one size fits all and it ends up being different for everyone.
I work with professionals who want to find balance in the fast pace of their modern lives. They want to slow down and simplify but still get things done.
Let’s get back to Lao Tzu for a second…”practice not-doing,” what does he really mean?
I think he means we need to practice slowing down to be present with what we are doing whether that’s writing a business case or snuggling with our kids.
I think he means when we “practice not-doing” we end up doing less busy-work and do more important meaningful work.
I think he means when we “practice not-doing” our priorities are met and our dreams become reality.
So today, I teach my clients how to practicing doing less where ever they can.
Do less busy-work. Do less of trying to control others. Do less complaining and criticizing. Do less worrying. Do less judging.
I think at the heart of Lao Tzu’s philosophy is when we do less we get more. I have found that to be true.
When I do less, I get more time. More compassion. More acceptance. More connected. More present in the moment.
And, I actually get more done.
If you are a professional trying to navigate the twists and turns of a fast paced modern life give me a call. We will get busy (irony intended) slowing you down so you can live a well-balanced life because I know life is better balanced.
We help professionals, like you, explore your mind and uncover what you are truly craving in life and business, shift your thinking to create the life you want, and evolve into the next best version of yourself.
I’d love to hear from you. Book a free mini-session with me, what are you waiting for?