Anyone can create a slower paced life if they desire it. SO why don’t more of us have that slower paced life that almost seems to be unattainable? I think it comes down to making intentional choices instead of living our life on autopilot. Autopilot is always the easier choice. But we need to take a minute and take control of what we actually want in our life.
I am in no way perfect at having a slow paced life. But the days I choose it, the days I strive to have it, those are the days that I am actually living the life I want for myself and my family. Just like anything else, with practice, patience, and grace we really can have a slow paced life in this fast paced world.
The past 18 months for me have been this journey of slowing down for me and what I have learned can be broken up into the 6 following ideas.
Starting your morning with an intention of what you want your day to look like could be the simple motivation you need. Write it down in a journal, say it aloud, or just keep it in your mind. I find that my favorite time to create an intention is as a fill my diffuser in the morning. It gives me a set time every morning that is devoted to giving my mind the space to create a simple intention.
Intentions I have created- “Today I want my kids to be the #1 priority all day. They will be my focus over cleaning, work, cooking, etc.” “Today I am going to make sure my cup is full. I will take care of myself so I can take care of others.” “Today the priority is that time does not dictate our activities. We will just live.”
What are your inputs?
We all have inputs every single day. Anyone that we carry conversation with through the day, music, tv, books, blogs, podcasts, social media, etc. What are you allowing to be your inputs? I want to make sure that what I am intaking aligns with allowing me to live slow. I listen to podcasts that educate me and make me feel uplifted. I listen to christian music that uplift my spirit and help me to have a happier mood.
If I am able to with work, I simply do not get on social media. Period. It is easy to have too many inputs, and social media is the easiest one to let go and quickly feel the benefits of not consuming it.
Because we have so many inputs through the day it is so important to find time that you are still. Physically and mentally still. Allow yourself to be with your own thoughts. I have found that I always come out of the shower feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. Yes, it feels amazing to be clean. But, I think its more than that. It is my quiet time when it’s just me and my thoughts. It allows me to think about my life, my blessings, my goals, my direction. It gives me the opportunity to recenter.
Spending time with God.
Is God one of your daily inputs? When I make it a priority to read my scriptures, several things happen for me. One of them is to realize that I do not want to be part of the world. But to stand with God at all times, in all things, and in all places. It makes me remember that I am a daughter of God and that He has a plan for me here on this earth.
There is no need to keep up with the Jone’s, because ultimately that doesn’t matter. Let it be that simple.
Spending time in nature.
Nature. This is the one I am probably the worst at, and it is my goal to change that this fall/winter. Yes, it is freezing cold outside right now in Utah. But, I have learned so much in the last few months of the benefits of being outside. As dumb as it sounds I think I feel like I am outside more than I am in because I have so much natural light in my home and I frequently am sitting next to a window looking outside. But the benefits of looking outside and being outside are dramatically different.
I would love to share more in a different blog post about all the benefits of being outside, and why it actually makes you mentally happier. But until then, trust me. In my opinion unplugging and being outside in nature naturally helps us to be more present in our life and slow down. Find time to be outside at least 30 minutes a day. I am going to try to start walking daily, no matter how cold it is. I may fail. But that is my goal for the next month. Walk everyday outside.
Be in tune with when the sun rises and when it sets.
This is another topic that I find fascinating, and am a total nerd about. But our bodies circadian rhythms do SO WELL when we wake up early and when we go to bed early. We do immense things for our body and minds when we see the sun rise and when we see the sun set.
The warm light of the sun is so good for our brain, and helps our body in numerous ways. Don’t wake up and turn all your lights on, use soft warm light. You know I love my LED candles. It not only helps to create that cozy mood. But it actually mentally helps you. Light is powerful!
After dinner when the sun starts to set, don’t leave you lights on all evening. Use lamps, or candles, or your accent lighting. I am telling you this small change has been game changing in helping me take my mornings and evenings slower.
I want to know if you already do any of these things and have seen the benefits. Or if you have something you do that you would love to add. I love hearing from you and learning from your experience as well.