Change doesn’t happen over night. But this past year I noticed a few small changes that I made to my everyday lifestyle that help me adapt to a slower way of living. Being 31 years old, I was tired of feeling busy all the time, having a work and personal schedule that was endless, and it felt like life was flying by. I blinked and I was 31. Where did the time go? Why is life speeding up? If you want to learn how to adopt a slow living lifestyle, keep reading!
The first change I made was going for a morning walk, every single day. After doing a ton or research on why walking is simply, life changing for your health and wellness, I committed to myself that I would walk every morning before my day began. Yes, I am human and there a few days where I didn’t make it out the door, either I was sick or its was freezing cold and rainy outside. Walking wakes me up in the morning. It gets my body moving, my mind right, the blood flowin’ and ready to tackle the day ahead. Spending those 10-15 minutes to myself outside hearing the birds chirp, feeling the sun on my face is a natural energy booster and it’s becoming such a normal part of my routine now. The days I don’t go for my morning walk leave me feeling off… that’s a story for another time.
The second change I made was, practicing gratitude. It’s easy to let your thoughts consume you. For me, when I was feeling sad, mad, down, or just blah… I found myself spiraling in a pity party having all these negative thoughts. I decided slowly start working on consciously thinking only happy thoughts when these hard times arrived. I would give myself pep talks by thinking about what I’m grateful for. When I would start to think of all things I’m thankful for and the joy that comes from it, the negatives thoughts would drift away. I would realize the reality of what I thought was ‘bad’ .. wasn’t really that awful when seeing how much in life makes you happy. So, practice gratitude.
Third, saying less to things that don’t bring me pure joy. I have a habit of never saying no. At work, in friendships, social life, and just life in general. It was getting to the point where I felt I was putting aside my feelings and wants, to make sure others and situations were dealt with but at the expense of my happiness. I’m not saying never do anything out of your comfort zone, or don’t help out a friend… but if you find yourself constantly being drained by things you commit to that aren’t filling your cup in return… maybe it’s time to start saying no. I slowly began to weed things out and became comfortable with saying no, and now I have such a new found sense of peace of mind. It sounds soooo cliche but hey it’s just the truth, do what makes you happy.
And lastly, checking in with myself and taking a breath. When I found myself in a hurry or stressed, I would pause, breathe, take a step back and re-evaluate. Life is life and there are times you’re running around trying to do all the things. I personally don’t like that feeling of feeling ‘rushed’. Rushing in the morning because I woke up late or racing out the door to make a dinner reservation. So in the times those hurry sense kicked in, I would just pause, breathe and tell myself it’s ok there is no need to rush. Now before you think i’m crazy are there times I’m running late and i’m haulin’ down the freeway.. yes. But not often, because I am learning to set myself up so I can avoid that hurried situation and feelings. For example, I was tired of waking up late where I had no time to myself and had to strictly get ready for work in 30 mins. So now I do wake up earlier, but the days I don’t want to get out of bed I remind my self we don’t want to rush get up you’ll feel better… works like a charm. So if you must hurry, hurry slow but remember to check-in with yourself .. pause, breathe, and take a step back. It will all be ok.
Those are the simple few things I made to slowly start adapting to a slower way of life. I’m not perfect, life happens, but everyday I try and make a conscious effort to be more mindful 🙂
If you want to learn more about what is slow living, check out this blog post > What is The Definition of Slow Living.