Parts Work

slow you down

Published 3 months ago • 2 min read

Have you ever buried your feet in the sand at the edge of the ocean?

The non-newtonian-fluid / oobleck-esque properties of the solid/liquid sand create strange reactions. It is extremely easy to slowly slide your feet in and out. But if you make any sudden movements, or try to jump, you feel locked in cement.

One of the leaders I work with and I met a pair of parts recently that had almost the same effect/affect.

She was experiencing overwhelming pressure to move faster, grow faster, hire faster, raise more money faster. But, that wasn't the problem. She loves moving fast. The problem was that recently, when she'd push, she'd freeze. And then the harder she pushed, the more stuck she felt. And as each minute and hour and day that would pass, the more behind and stuck she felt.

First of all, we agreed that for the rest of the hour, nothing else was going to get done anyway. So we asked the part that was screaming to bail on the call to get to the emails if it could relax back and snooze for just the next 48 minutes or so. And that was ok.

Then we did a little breathing exercise (hit reply and ask about the breathing, and I'll share it with you) and then tried to find the part that carried all the "we need to jump" energy. Once we found it and tried to get close to it, another part came running in that was saying, "We don't have time for this. We can't go there right now. Let's not explore this right now. Slow down."

And since it wouldn't let us focus on 'We need to jump' we shifted our focus to 'Slow you down' and asked, "why?"

"If I don't slow you down, you're going to die."


"Because, you'll work yourself to death, just your like your grandad."

"So, if we figure out how to unblock this, and keep moving quickly, you think we're going to have a stroke? Why do you believe that?"

As we spent more time with the part, we discovered it was protecting a very young girl who has been afraid of strokes for a very long time, because one of the only times she remembers seeing her dad cry was when he told her about losing his dad and how he just disappeared one day, and she could not understand how something like that could happen and it was so scary.

We stayed with the girl, helped her understand, and helped her feel safe. And when we turned back to 'Slow you down' they no longer felt like they had to protect the little girl, but they were still concerned about going too fast and doing too much.

My client was able to show 'Slow you down' how that actually caused her to push harder and harder to overcome the resistance. And while she does appreciate the reminder to take care of her health, making her feel stuck actually made things worse.

So we asked, "What do you need from me, to be able to trust me and release?"

"I want to know that you will actually take a break when you've planned recovery time rather than working through it every time."

She agreed, "I can do that!"

"Then I can relax when you are working and focus on supporting your receovery!"

Thank you for subscribing to Parts Work.

If these stories resonate with you, and you would like hire a guide to help you discover and work with your own unique parts, I am waiting for your call.

Until next time,

Thomas Knoll


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Parts Work

by Thomas Knoll – Founder,

Parts Work is an intimate encounter with the practice of Self Healing Leadership.​ Subscribe to hear what it is like when we go inside to do this transformative work.

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