The Magic of Slowing Down, My Accidental Destination to Wonderful Dreams

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I don’t know about you but it’s so easy to schedule every waking moment around  “crossing things off the things to do list of life.” And there’s nothing wrong with wanting to be efficient and productive, it helps us feel accomplished and move towards our goal.

But there’s an equal value in slowing down and allowing extra time and white space between our appointments, commitments, and things we want to accomplish. I call it “creating intentional spaciousness” in our lives.

I got to experience first-hand the magic of slowing down.

It was at first glance “a typical Monday,” and there were all these appointments spread all over town in NYC. I couldn’t get them to stack up so there were larger lapses of time between them. I brought my journal, planner, and other productivity accouterments (French for accessories IMHO) with me to “use my time well.”

But something far more magical happened. In between my business visits with clients to discuss possible speaking and coaching programs in NYC around mindfulness, resiliency, and life coaching, I walked down a different block. There it was a former huge electronic store replaced with Wonderful Dreams. An immersive coffee/art house where you can see a multi-room exhibit, add to the creative whimsy of it, and be flooded with color.

Because I had extra time, I walked towards it. When I walked in, I was mesmerized.

The entire space was dedicated to Alice in Wonderland. I beamed, having worked with an award-winning storytelling company for 5 years on and off, decades ago, and having performed The Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll hundreds of times, the prose rippled through my body.

The tall lovely colorfully garbed 20-something male met me at the booth and shared what the exhibit was all about. I bowed and recited with the original blocking (stage movement) from decades ago.

’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves

Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:

All mimsy were the borogoves,

And the mome raths outgrabe.

“Beware the Jabberwock, my son!

The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!

Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun

The frumious Bandersnatch!”

He took his vorpal sword in hand;

Long time the manxome foe he sought—

So rested he by the Tumtum tree

And stood awhile in thought.

And, as in uffish thought he stood,

The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,

Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,

And burbled as it came!

One, two! One, two! And through and through

The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!

He left it dead, and with its head

He went galumphing back.

“And hast thou slain the Jabberwock?

Come to my arms, my beamish boy!

O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!”

He chortled in his joy.

This young group of 20-somethings gathered around me rather transfixed. They

didn’t even know of the poem, ironic since the whole theme was based on Alice in Wonderland. We discussed the elegance and whimsy of his work and this poem. They began to google it and were fascinated. They thanked me for sharing it, and I thanked them for being part of a creative experience that knitted together commerce with art.

When I looked up the significance of the Jabberwocky, it is said that it represents an evil force that must be defeated for good to prevail.

While I certainly wasn’t fending off an evil force that day, perhaps I was dismantling the myth that crossing off more things on the eternal things-to-do list is more important than allowing the wondering of life to enter our world. To embrace the magic of art, color, and whimsy. To meet new people and to share our love of creativity, connection, and life.

How can you slow down today and experience the magic?

I’d love to know!


  • Lois Barth

    Lois Barth is a human development expert, motivational speaker, coach, and thrilled to have delivered her first ‘book child,’ “Courage to Sparkle.” She champions women to share their brilliance and to live an authentic life. She speaks at women’s conferences all over the country and has been quoted in The New York Times,The Wall Street Journal, Fitness, Weight Watchers, and to name a few.

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