It is unfortunate that being busy has been equated to better living. It seems that to achieve success one must always be busy and working, with schedules packed to the brim. This mentality, however, often leads to burnout. In fact, over a long period of time, it will leave you unsatisfied and well, tired. And so, with a new season almost upon us, it’s time to consider adding new practices to your life. This Spring we are focusing on how to practise slow living.
Slow living encourages us to take a slower approach to our daily lives, living intentionally and taking time to savour life’s simple moments.
The beautiful thing about slowing down is that small changes can make for a big impact. You don’t have to drop everything that you are doing, clear your schedules or do anything dramatic. We’ve selected 8 small ways that you can begin during the season of renewal and rejuvenation.
1. Make it a habit to unplug, even for 30 minutes a day
Technology can be wonderful. But sometimes, it’s overwhelming! Many of us utilize technology daily for our work, and it’s not practical to suggest not working with technology. Without a doubt, if you take time to unplug daily, even if it’s the last 30 minutes before bed, you will reap the benefits. You’ll have a more restful sleep. Likewise, when you unplug it’s like giving your brain a restart and it’s proven to help reduce both stress and anxiety.
2. Savour your Food
One of the best ways to approach savouring your food is by pretending you are a food critic. It may seem funny, but with each bite concentrate on the flavours, the textures and the sensations of nourishment. Undoubtedly, you then become more aware of what you’re eating and how much. It allows you to be satisfied more thoroughly with what you are putting into your body. Plus, it will give you an opportunity to be grateful for each and every meal.
3. Gather your Thoughts and Journal
Have you ever been worried about something only to confide in someone and feel better? That’s what jouralling is, except it’s like confiding in yourself. When you journal it forces you to organize your thoughts, to put them in words. What are the most important things from each day? A journal is a healthy way to vent frustration but it’s also calming and productive. It makes you view your days under a new lense, and over an extended amount of time, you can use it to learn about yourself too. Here at Emerson Wild we are currently loving the 5-Minute Journal for all our journaling.
4. Immerse yourself in Your Environments
Be present wherever you are. Truly listen to those who are speaking to you. Concentrate on the now, without letting your mind wander off. This practise, though incredibly simple, can lead to improvements in your social skills, creativity and cultivate an appreciation for the world around you. Furthermore, you’ll feel the impacts of this very quickly.
5. Dedicate more time to Sleep and Rest
Sleep and rest aren’t necessarily the same things, but they are vital. Try to set a time to wind down after a long day. Aim to head to bed even 15 minutes earlier than you normally do. Take breaks throughout your workday to elicit feelings of calmness. Practise 5 minutes of meditation to center yourself. Starting with simple goals will help provide a sense of accomplishment that can encourage you to prioritize sleep and rest. Certainly, you’ll find that you will have an increase in concentration and memory, a better mood and a free immune-booster.
6. Get outside
Whether it’s going for a walk, simply sitting in your yard or tending to a small garden, get outside. Even opening a window in the morning. Take in the sights, sounds and smells of Mother Nature. Being in nature boosts your immunity, improves your mood and can help fight depression. Your connection with the living world is constantly calling. Answer it, with some time in the great outdoors. (You can also bring the outdoors to you through biophilic design, read our blog post on it here!)
7. Set Priorities and Boundaries
A main aspect of slow living is to live intentionally. It is about living each day in harmony with your values and what you want out of your life. Setting priorities is important in determining what it actually is that you want to spend your time doing. Setting boundaries can help while you’re trying to be mindful of where and to who your time is being given. As you slow down concentrate on what you need from your life, not what life needs from you.
8. Declutter Your Way to Slow Living
Spring cleaning anyone? Tis’ the season to take a look at your spaces and remove things that are no longer serving you. And it’s not about getting rid of everything. It’s simply about removing excess that is not needed and eliminating distractions. When you declutter, you’re left with items that are important to you, that make you happy. Therefore, the very act itself is proven to make you feel better.
We hope you can introduce even one of these practises into your daily life, and can begin your journey of slow living. Connect with us on Instagram to stay up to date on all things Emerson Wild. Furthermore, follow us on Pinterest, where we are always pinning on all things slow living!