Listen: Author Sheridan Voysey discuss 'hurry sickness', the benefits of reflection and how to cultivate joy
Sheridan Voysey wants us to take time out of our busy lives to reflect, so we can discern what is important and see the meaning in our lives.
“The customer service values of the marketing culture that we’re a part of have seeped into our everyday lives,” Sheridan said.
“We are very used to leaving our mobile phone on all night so we don’t miss a call or always checking our email numerous time during the day – always thinking we have to be on top of everything.
“This push for productivity and efficiency – more, faster, better outcomes – has just left us absolutely exhausted. And we know that. We know that all the research points to high levels of stress, high levels of anxiety, high levels of burnout. But I think what is jettisoned well before we go down that path is the ability to see the meaning of our lives, and actually see the context of our days, see how all the parts fit together and let the story play out.
“If we keep on going, going, going and just continually being pushed by these efficiency principles then we lose a sense of what life is all about.”
This year, many of us are reassessing the hectic lifestyles we live. Lockdown helped us experience the benefits of slowing down, while facing uncertainty on a daily basis has made us mindful of the need to promote wellbeing and foster resilience.
But reflection doesn’t come naturally to many of us. That’s why Sheridan has created a collection of stories and thought-starters to help us go deeper. His new book Reflect with Sheridan is a gift book of 70 stories on themes of joy, wonder, meaning, belonging, compassion, and hope.
Sheridan spoke to Hope 10.32 from Oxford in the UK, where they are in the thick of a second national lockdown with shops, cafes and restaurants closed for business.
“We’ve got to maintain our two-metres distance, we can’t have anybody over to our homes,” Sheridan said.
In spite of the lockdown, at the time of writing, the UK was still experiencing 35,000 new cases and over 500 deaths per day.
“It’s continually bad, so we have to have this lockdown, but it does make it very difficult,” Sheridan said.
However, he believes the difficulties of 2020 have led to renewed interest in spiritual practices.
“For some people, they are pursuing the secular, but not religious, line – looking into mindfulness and other practices, looking into contemplation of nature, things like that. For others, it is distinctly religious.”
Sheridan said there has been an increase in online attendance at Sunday livestream services, with local BBC radio stations also now broadcasting Sunday religious services.
He also received a lot of interest in a simple breath prayer that he wrote during the first lockdown.
“I saw that go crazy all over social media and a lot of people who were picking that up and running with it didn’t seem to be people that otherwise would call themselves Christians,” he says.
“They were looking for some sort of practice – and that’s the key word I think – something I can do that can make me feel a little bit better in this difficult time.”
Sheridan’s new book Reflect with Sheridan is available now. Listen to Sheridan Voysey discuss ‘hurry sickness’, the benefits of reflection and how to cultivate joy in the player above.
Livestream with Sheridan Voysey
In Conversation with Sheridan Voysey on his new book ‘Reflect’. We’ll also be having a QnA, please submit your questions
Posted by Hope 103.2 on Wednesday, 2 December 2020
Join us for a conversation and Q&A with broadcaster, author and Hope 103.2 alumni Sheridan Voysey. We’ll be talking about how to regain purpose when it feels like your life has been derailed, the ins-and-outs of hurry sickness and how burnout and success don’t have to go hand in hand. Sheridan will also read us some excerpts from his new book, ‘Reflect with Sheridan Voysey’. Hosted by Hope 103.2’s Laura Bennett.