I went swimming with a friend for the first time in about a billion years yesterday, and it was the most thought provoking and enlightening exercises I have undertaken in a while.
At first I tried to swim laps and I failed miserably. I couldn’t even get halfway before stopping, panting, out of breath. Which was weird because I didn’t think I was THAT out of shape, in general. Luckily my friend diagnosed the problem, and gave me the swim breathing 101. It all revolved around deep, well timed inhales and exhales. After he showed me the technique, I swim to the other end without stopping, no problem (which was my goal for the day).
And that’s when I stopped to think. It’s crazy how much of a difference breathing makes. The more intentional, and slower I went, the faster I got to the other side of the pool. Which was so strange and counter intuitive for me.
But I was thinking how that relates to life. And more specifically, work. We live in a world where we are supposed to go at 100 miles an hour, and the faster our life speedometer goes the more successful we are. But is that really the best way to be effective? Is that the best way to get to the other side of the pool?
If I learned anything from swimming, I’m questioning this notion.
Food for thought.