Learning From BAD HABITS – Like Cigars and Quickie Sex – It’s Time To SLOW DOWN Folks
I saw a short video the other day from Steve Harvey titled ‘Why I Smoke Cigars’. And it made sense, in a weird, unhealthy way. His basic reason is to slow down. You can’t smoke a cigar fast. You have to devote time to it. Which means everything else can wait.
Is there a lesson here?
Now Steve’s wasn’t the first video to mention this, but strangely, it was the first time I truly thought about it. I occasionally smoke cigars, but my interpretation has always been to anxiously get through them as quickly as possible. There is always something else I want to get started.
So I’ve been pondering, and remembering. Way back in the day, before we carried smart rectangles in our pockets that connected us to everyone … we had to wait to come home to a blinking light on an answering machine. You wanted me? You got me … 12 hours later. And this delay was normal. Didn’t matter, we didn’t need to multitask 42 things at a time.
When was the last time you sat in your backyard, park, or wherever … and didn’t do a single other thing? It’s hard! Damn hard. I tried it the other day without benefit of tobacco or drink. Just me, the chickens in their coop, and … nothing else. I was not relaxed. Not at all. The only thoughts I had were what I was going to do when I allowed myself up. It felt like waiting on the starting line of a race.
Now, there’s nothing wrong with the hustle. With multitasking. With … running with scissors. But what about balance? We’re so damn good these days at racing, why aren’t we also so damn good at resting? It’s like you have one powerful arm that can lift anything, and another which can’t even move. We purposefully seem to unbalance ourselves.
Look, we all hate waiting. Or at least, I hate waiting. Instant gratification has become a way of life. News sound bites instead of news stories. 30 second Tiktoks instead of videos. But we of a certain age remember the ‘before’. When we weren’t tethered. We lived in a moment, and even if we were running full-tilt, we stayed there before we lived in another moment.
Now I’m as guilty as anyone. In fact, probably more guilty. I have zero patience. But I understand Steve’s meaning. Not only do we HAVE TO carve out 30, 40, even 60 minutes of time to ourselves … and protect it like a mother protects her chicks … but we also have to master those moments. Enjoy them. Relish them.
How? I have no clue. None whatsoever. It’s as mysterious to me as the way teenagers think. It’s like this vague memory of something I once knew, but have completely forgotten. But I will figure it out. This resting and being in a moment. Maybe by not trying. But maybe by just turning everything off for a bit.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I think I’ll go have a cigar. Slowly.
And yes I know, cigars are bad for you. I’m slowly giving them up. It’s less about the smoke than the act of forcing myself to do something relaxing. I’ll find another thing.