In 2023 my word for the year was SLOW. If you’re new to my blog, you can catch up with the posts throughout the year about my journey here.
To summarise what I learned before I share a few of my favourite quotes collected throughout the year, here are a few takeaways that have found permanent homes in my mind:
- Slowness and softness let me see which way the flow is going and allow me to follow with curiosity.
- Slowness is an ongoing, lifelong process, constantly trimming and adjusting as life changes and swirls around us. I don’t have to have it all figured out at the start of the game.
- Slow living is about simplifying life so that we can have a Life — note the capitalisation.
- There is an uncomplicated way to figure out the right speed to attack things:
Reason + context + outcome = correct time and effort to give (i.e. fast, slow, or somewhere in between)
You can read in more detail in my previous post.
- A slow approach to life does not mean that I am lazy nor that I lack discipline. In fact, it requires more discipline, if anything.
- I can make room to allow for slowness by creating habits and systems and editing out the things that no longer serve me. Repetition creates ease, and ease allows for speed and smoothness in the things that can or need to be done that way. This frees up time to let other things progress more slowly.
Slow living is, above all, an act of self-preservation and self-compassion.
If you wish to slow down and are looking for some more practical suggestions, Courtney Carver provides a fantastic list to kick-start the process: How To Slow Down: 97 Ways To Enjoy Your Life This Year – Be More with Less
Here are a few of my favourite quotes from this year:
On FOMO and love
On Focus and Presence
On quality of life
And above all…
And so, we come to the WHY of slowing down the pace of life. I’ll let Mary Oliver lay it out in her poem, The Summer Day. Emphasis mine.
Slowness makes space for us to pay attention and understand what it is we wish to do with this fleeting moment in time we have on this planet. We are less than a blip on the radar in the grand scale of time. Don’t waste it by going so fast that you cannot live and love.
Do less. Be still. Sit in silence…only then can you hear the words of love. Soft. Kind. Compassionate. Loving.