Like the ebb and flow of the tides of our great oceans and coastal lines, so do we mirror the waves to the seasons of our lives. There are times in life when we have to put in more effort to bear fruit and a time to reap the rewards.
I would describe coasting as a place where 'a lot of life happens'. It is the everyday hustle and bustle, it’s the lack of excitement or disappointment, it’s steady, it’s the routine, it’s the work!
According to author Lydia smith, coasting is doing just the right amount of work to get by comfortably.
It is neither shirking one’s responsibilities nor slacking. She says, “Think about coasting as idling, being in neutral gear. The engine is ready to take over when called for, and the driver is present. But we’re not really going anywhere.”
Adulting can seem like a never-ending rollercoaster of putting out fires or starting them. As we are ever existing, coasting assures you that once in a while it is okay to engage the autopilot and zone out for a while.
It is giving yourself some time to enjoy the warmth that you created.
In her article Why we should be coasting at work, Lydia defines two types of coasting that can also be translated to our personal lives.
The first is when something isn’t working and there is conflict to avoid it by perhaps overstaying in a role where you start to feel uninspired.
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This type of coasting would require intervention to get you on a more fulfilling path.
The second type is when you make a conscious decision to lighten up things a bit. It is when you pop open that top button, pull up the sleeves, and enjoy not being on top of everything.
However, she explains that this coasting requires our awareness, perhaps a plan, to make sure that the 'lightening up' does not become a habit.
Some have the view that coasting is primarily negative, a problem to be addressed, however, just as every season has a different focus, so should we.
The key to coasting is knowing yourself enough to know when it’s okay to let go of things and trust the flow.