Doing offline things slowly has been relatively easy to do, ironically quite quickly, because the results on how I was feeling were glaringly obvious. Happier, less tired, more content, relaxed.
I am only at the beginning of slowing things down and have been trying to do so intuitively rather than doing ‘generic slow living things’. I have started by trying to recognize moments in the day where I feel more tense than others, the idea being I’ll work on little chunks of life a bit of a time to see if it’s possible to positively improve my day. Here’s the first thing moments of my day that I identified as ‘things I do but don’t really enjoy as much as I know I could’:
#1 The School Run.
Leaving for the school run 10 minutes earlier has meant that I’m not stressing about traffic, about finding a parking space, about anything at all. In fact I found I gained little pockets of more natural time. So arriving at the school gates five minutes early to pick up the children means I can enjoy a quick Instagram dip in peace and quiet before focusing on family time when we get home.
I have been enjoying making myself a nice lunch, just for me, when I am home alone and sitting at the table reading a magazine, slowly eating, rather than flicking noodle juice across the keyboard as I simultaneously Facebook and chomp. Simple and quick to cook lunches like sage and butter fried mushrooms on toast, soup and a roll, poached egg on toast and my new fave thing avocado on toast (with a rasher of crispy bacon on top for extra opulence!) Yeah a lot of toast – but that’s an Autumn thing right?!
#3 The post-school but pre-tea gap.
Taking the kids for a walk on the way home from school, like in these photos you see when we popped to the local beach on a blustery afternoon and just chatting and collecting shells has left us all happier and the atmosphere at home more relaxed when we do return. Energy has been burned off and they both seem happier to settle down and do their spellings / home work.
You might be looking at those three things and thinking ‘well it doesn’t take a genius to realize that allowing more time for things will make life easier’ but there’s a big difference between knowing it and doing it. Doing less, but being more present in those things, taking my time, enjoying the process of what I am doing has made me enjoy it more. And as a result I am happy doing less. Happy being the key word.
Little changes can make a big difference.