From the early days of our childhood, we are getting programmed. For better, bigger, faster. Motherhood competition, parental pursuit for “my kid already knows this” and “mine knows it better”, “mine knows it already”. First, to enroll for school and for plenty of extra activities. Swimming classes, karate, dancing, music. Huge overload for small kiddo! Then to graduate. To get diplomas, certificates, degrees. Next studies, first job. To get promotion, salary hike, training, workshops. Immediately after marriage, children, and… also grandchildren. Such a traditional model exists in a strong Indian mentality. A lot of young people do not even want to oppose or disappoint their family and they follow the external expectations. One achievement runs after another one! We buy more, eat faster, travel more often – we fall into a spiral where we stop enjoying what we have achieved because we are still concentrating on what we do not have. Is it even possible then to have a slow life in India where many people try to make you follow what they think is good for you from all possible directions?
Speeding down – how to start?
How to program yourself for a slow life? Isn’t it all overwhelming? If you ask anyone why they run this daily marathon, it will occur that they do hurry up just because they got used to such lifestyle and not because they have to do so. Slow life trend is not about having a snail pace in everything. It’s about rushing only when the situation really requires it. And I clearly see it on the Indian roadsides – where all Annas, all Bhaias have always time to drink tea, eat street food snack, have a chat. What about slightly copying this habit and saying no for this day-to-day rush? Let’s be conscious, size the day and we will see how the quality of life improves with a blink of an eye. You can be still a project lead, project manager or head of the program in a global corporation and at the same time celebrate your life.
Create an action plan.
Do the homework – are you ready to give a try? This magic is not a one-day shot. Getting started with any shift in consciousness requires preparation. To organize own thoughts, dreams, needs, settle your expectations. Answer yourself: why this whole race is going on, whether you really, really need it and based on this – develop new habits.
Conscious and peaceful life is a wonderful way to celebrate experiences and memories. In my opinion, it is precisely the hidden uniqueness of the slow life. It is a very individual experience, which supports every single person, and affects us even though we are not always aware of it.
Take small actions.
Our smartphones have become the remote control of our lives. That’s not reinventing the wheel to say that we got trapped by electronic gadgets routine. We wake up and check Facebook updates before even rolling out of bed. Take a small step back – try one day to eat your breakfast without scrolling the wall and refreshing it every 5 seconds. Switch yourself off for one full day, no mobile, no phone, no Internet for one Saturday. You will feel the difference.
Act and achieve.
Slow life you want to have can start at any time. You do not have to catch up on your dreams first, fulfill the must of having 2 cars, 2 houses and luxurious vacation every 3 months. It’s a constant process of changing your perspective and habits. Every day, with small steps you learn how to deal with needs, emotions, how to control them and not let them take over my behavior.
How do I live?
Since my family grew with 3 little newcomers, priorities have radically shifted from the professional to the personal ones. Life naturally forced me to slow down. Initially, I was not believing that some other life than the corporate-business world can ever exist but now I really enjoy it! It’s a bit against Indian fast-paced city life mentality but I would say… so what? It’s my life and I have it only once to live. How do I then organize our slow life routine?
- we do not wear a watch
- we eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner together, together means without phones in our hands
- we do not eat processed food
- we grow our own food
- we go offline on weekends
- we follow slow shopping according to shopping list only
- we do exercise daily (even it is only 10 min morning stretching)
- we travel slow, we enjoy and experience spots off the beaten track
- we realize our personal plans that stick to our values
Now I do find time for friends and family, I eat no processed food only and I take care that my family also follows the same routine. I do not hurry. I do not have this inner feeling to satisfy anyone, to realize someone’s plans. I know how to say no. I want to be responsible for my life myself and I want to be able to enjoy it, whether I am 30, 40 or 50 years old.
I am going nuts for my new intentional life by owning less, creating new habits, and cultivating opportunities to give as I already have everything I need in my life. I am happy and fulfilled! Either we will be in India or any other place in the world.
Slow life is comfort life indeed! At your own pace.
Do you live your life at your own pace? Share your idea about how to live consciously and enjoy your life.