Peru Legit Life Lesson 1: Slow down or vomit

In this world of 1,001 things to do each second, it can be not only hard to slow down, but seemingly incomprehensible to our mind that it is even POSSIBLE.

I know this first hand.

I was doing it all since the age of 9 – band, choir, private piano lessons.   Then, even more into my teens – more band, more choir, more private piano lessons, student body leadership, prom committee chair, dance team captain, and who knows what else I’m missing. And, I can’t forget my early professional years – sitting as chair for three company committees, leading a women’s empowerment group, starting my own business and working full time.

My mind tries to appreciate, yet forget, the business of those “do-it-all” days.

The thing is – it’s not the fact that I was really busy that was the problem.  I loved being busy. Learning new things.  Meeting interest people. Making shit happen.  I still do!

The problem was…my body didn’t like it so much.  You can learn more about that by watching my signature talk, The Caterpillar Effect: How to let go and cocoon.

While I was in Peru, I was quickly reminded of the lesson to slow down.

After touching down in Cusco (Peru’s ancient Incan empire city nestled in the Andes Mountains), there was no choice to slow down. No – Peru demanded I sit my ass down and turn off my “Strong North American Independent Woman Syndrome” (as our Shaman described us).

The funny thing is,  for the past few years, I’ve been really in touch with what my body needs.  How to relax.  How to nourish it.  How to feed my soul with constant, loving Me Time.

Jess Tomlinson Meditation at Machu Picchu

But Peru was a different story.  She allowed me to feel completely into my body.  Getting in touch with every pain, every pleasure, every sensation, every internal digestive process.

At 11,152 feet elevation, Cusco is a vortex of energy. And elevation sickness.

It wasn’t until we made our way to our gorgeous retreat center in the Sacred Valley, sitting at 9,751 feet elevation, that I began to feel discomfort.

Perhaps it was the chicken I ate for lunch, I thought.  I hadn’t eaten meat for a while.

Maybe it was the 17 hours of travel time from Vegas. Being in the air causes me to bloat like a whoopee cushion.

Whatever it was – probably a combo of these things – I woke up late that first night and barfed my brains out.

Then, I went back to bed.  And woke up the next morning crying.

There was one thing for sure.  Peru had guided me into my body.  Rooted me in her land.  And shown me her power through the force that led me to upchuck my dinner. All in less than 24 hours.

As I sat at breakfast with the lovely sisterhood of women that I was soon to experience Peru’s magic with, tears streamed down my face for no reason at all.

Then, some of the other women began to cry too.  It was permission to begin the release. To slow down and let it flow naturally.

River Urubamba in Pisac, Peru

The rest of my trip I consciously walked slower, ate slower, spoke slower, thought slower and breathed slower.  It didn’t feel like I had a choice, but really, I did.  I could have chosen to resist what Peru wanted me to experience.  But instead, I choose to embrace the gentle ease.

Soon, it felt natural. Soft. Energizing. Slowing down, to speed up the effortlessness of it all.

How do you slow down in your life to get more in touch with your body?

I’d love to hear from you in the comments section below…let’s start a conversation!

Legit Loving you,

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