Life in the Slow Lane: How & Why To Embrace Slow Living
By Nicole McCray:
“Slow down and enjoy life. It’s not only the scenery you miss by going too fast – you also miss the sense of where you are going and why.” – Eddie Cantor
In today’s fast-paced world, it’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of daily life. However, there is a growing movement towards “slow living”, which emphasizes taking a slower and more intentional approach to life.
But it’s not as easy for everyone to make the transition at first. That’s why we have curated the simplest ways that can help you embrace gradual slow living.
How to Make Slow Living Work For You
As shared above, the transition is not always easy. And even for those who have embraced slow living all their lives, naturally, times can get hectic. Before we know it, we feel like a hamster spinning on a wheel. That’s why resetting and using these tips and tricks is the perfect way to recenter.
Embracing slow living can also help you to be less wasteful in your daily life. By taking a more intentional and mindful approach to your consumption habits, you can reduce your environmental impact and live a more sustainable lifestyle.
Farm To Table Food
Farm-to-table food is a natural fit with the philosophy of slow living, as it emphasizes the importance of locally-sourced, seasonal, and sustainable food. The advancements in food technology & security has given us all the gift of being able to grow our own food straight from our homes using various sustainable farming methods such as permaculture, soilless farming, etc. Many of these solutions focus on growing food with lesser waste.
By incorporating this practice into your daily life, you can enjoy fresh, healthy, and delicious food while also supporting local farmers and reducing your environmental impact.
Eating wholesome and natural foods is great from a health standpoint but also from a mental standpoint. If you have the space and resources, consider growing your own microgreens, fruits and vegetables. This can be a fulfilling and rewarding way to connect with nature and enjoy fresh, healthy food right from your own garden.
Disconnect to Reconnect
Speaking of putting away the phone, let’s do it more often. Many psychologists have published studies linking the negative effects of being on social media and your phone too often. Two of them certainly are depression and anxiety.
But it’s easier said than done when we rely on our phones for everything. Here are a few tricks to put it away.
- Writing things down is the first step in disconnecting. You don’t have to set reminders on your phone because you have a calendar in print.
- Set time limits for social media apps. Try spending no more than 30 minutes a day on all your social media apps.
- Take advantage of focus mode or do not disturb. When you are doing a task, set this. If you have kids, you can make exceptions for certain people to be able to call through.
Intentionally Doing One Task At a Time
We live in the land of multitasking. Watching TV shows while doing work or eating breakfast while catching up on emails. It’s second nature to many of us now. But there is the truth behind the idea that you can only do one thing at 100 percent at one time.
When you do multiple things, you can only do them with a percentage of your effort. The power of doing one thing at a time helps us be present. It naturally slows things down.
When You Catch Yourself Doing Multiple Things At A Time
- Take a deep breath and stop what you are doing for a minute.
- Think about what needs to be done at that moment and if one thing has priority over the other.
- Choose a time to reschedule the activity that you are choosing to do later. Or delegate it! Not every task has to be done by yourself.
Slow living emphasizes being mindful of what you consume, whether it be food, products, or media. By taking the time to consider your choices, you can make more intentional decisions that align with your values and priorities. This can include choosing products with minimal packaging, buying local and organic foods, and investing in high-quality, long-lasting products.
This can also help you to reduce waste by encouraging you to use what you have and make do with less including repairing items instead of replacing them, recycling and upcycling old items, and composting food scraps and yard waste.
Slow living emphasizes sustainable practices, such as using reusable bags and containers, minimizing water use, and reducing energy consumption. By incorporating these practices into your daily routine, you can reduce your environmental impact and live a more sustainable lifestyle.
Get The Good Old Pen and Paper
The best way to start slowing down is to use a good old-fashioned pen and paper. There are so many uses for this. For starters, journaling gives you a second to process your thoughts while also being mindful.
The task of writing forces us to get rid of distractions and give time to our thoughts. Most people find this the best way to check in and see what they are truly thinking and feeling.
Writing things down, such as recipes and schedules, also gives intent to the situation. It’s better to have a clear plan for your day than to need your phone to alert you. Alarms can cause anxiety and stress. But intentionally setting out a specific time to do something during your day after writing it out adds purpose.
Trying One Step At a Time
It would be an oxymoron to rush into trying all these new things at once. Instead, slowly incorporate one idea into your routine at a time. Chances are, if you haven’t done any of this before, trying too much at once will cause you to be overwhelmed. That’s the opposite of the goal.
Making something work for you as a new habit is the best way to approach the above. Slow living is different from person to person. Finding more joy in your routine is the biggest priority.
“The more simple we are, the more complete we become.” – August Rodin