It won’t be a surprise to you that after my last post on ‘big thinking and slowing down’ that I am dedicating this summer to some ‘slow living’. I need to regain some balance, and to me this seems the perfect way to do it.
My thoughts have turned to slow living lots recently. I often find that I naturally want to work at a slower pace than parts of our society seem to require. I like to take my time to process things, and when there is a lot happening, I crave time to soak it all up and let my thoughts have a little bit of space to develop. This was only highlighted by recent trips to London where everyone is literally moving at such a speed. I was reminded why I love it so much where we live, but even in our sleepy market town by the sea, you can’t avoid certain aspects of our society that expect you to keep up with things and move at a fast pace.
It turns out though that I am not the only one craving a more gentle approach to life. Last weeks post seemed to strike a chord with many of you, and it would appear that lots of us often get that desire to slow things down.
I have had to work really hard lately at being present and making it count, and that message is at the heart of slow living.
Earlier this week I experienced something which was a perfect example of why it’s good to be present. I happened upon a man trimming a lavender hedge; he had four big boxes full of fragrant cut offs. I had the fleeting thought that he might be about to throw it all away. I couldn’t bear to think of all that beautiful lavender being wasted. He was just going to dispose of it, so kindly gave it to me instead. If I had been buried in my phone, checking various notifications – which describes my walk home from the nursery drop of recently – I would have completely missed out.
Essentially my summer will be like a 6 week meditation, when I will try to be mindful and make the most out of every moment – choosing quality over quantity. Slow living doesn’t mean you don’t achieve anything, or you aren’t active, it just places importance on being present and wholehearted in each moment. Making true connections as opposed to rushing through things and having that feeling like you weren’t really there.
It is so easy to miss little gems of moments if we are distracted with ‘grown-up’ stuff and work. When I am playing with Bailey, I am going to play hard. I will be sure to completely unplug for designated days. Finally I am going to breathe into the moments of rest and truly relax in them – unburdened by the guilty feeling that I should be ‘crossing something of my list’.
Slow living goes hand in hand with my wholehearted approach to life and I can’t wait to find a slower rhythm. It will be interesting to see how I do, and of course I will keep you posted on how I am getting on.
To be the happiest and healthiest we can be, I think we could all benefit from a slower gear, a pause for thought, more moments of stillness. Even if society; work, friends, family, life in general demands for us to move more quickly, perhaps we should resist the need for speed and opt for some slower living.
What do you think? Will you take things more slowly over the summer? Do you think all of society would benefit from a change of gear? Would love to know…