“Hurry is not of the devil; hurry is the devil.” – Carl Jung
It’s morning. Just opened my eyes. I can feel my mind already racing. I get up. Make my way towards the kitchen. Because, well, coffee. Before I’ve had time to even think, my phone is already in my hand, sending messages and checking Instagram.
My best intentions to wake up, pray and meditate, or just simply sit in silence usually drown in the incessant noise within. I’m a hurry-er, a worry-er and all-around anxious person by nature. And one of the hardest things for me to do is be still.
In a world where we’re applauded for how much we accomplish and how fast we get things done, being still or doing “nothing” is almost a crime. Everything is in an instant. Our food, services, messages, emails and our gratification. Innovation today is more about making life easier, more convenient, more efficient and less about actually inventing something (unfortunately). Multi-tasking, as harmful as it is to our brains, is praised as a “must-have” skill. Switching tabs, skimming through things while sending texts. There’s no escaping these conditions. They’re all over us like stink on poop.
As I learn more and more about what it means to live minimally and adding value, I’ve come to understand that this lifestyle is counter-cultural. We’re going hard against the grain. But, I’ve realized that merely throwing out my things won’t make me a minimalist. Simply purchasing ethical and sustainable products won’t make me a conscious consumer. Or trading the city for a life out in the woods won’t make me live at a slower pace (although, I’m sure they’d help).
I do confess: slowing down is hard to do. Truth is, I feel like I need stay busy and do a lot to be productive. For most of my life, people who took their time frustrated me. Blame it on the NYC state of mind, but my mind has been programmed a certain way. However, today my priorities have changed. Plus, let’s be honest, life in the fast lane is exhausting.
Today, every day, there’s a trade that happens. Letting go of much but also gaining much more. A daily rewiring of sorts in my head. A shifting of habits. Deliberately setting aside of time for what is meaningful. Thinking things through. Being Intentional. Looking inwards. A pursuit of what brings joy and fulfillment. A life of simplicity where less really is more.
Slow living takes time. And patience. Calm. And take deep breaths. It means unplugging. And saying no, but saying yes. It’s about trying again and again. I have yet to master it. It really is an art.
The art of slow living…