We all live in a busy world where “fast” is equal to efficient and productive. On the other hand, we usually relate “slow” to the right opposite. However, the term slow living is here to prove otherwise. But what do we mean when we talk about slow living and how could slow living have benefits for your life?
Back where I come from, we use an expression. I could translate it as: “You are gaining more life while walking slowly”. This expression is mostly used to describe people who are always late and care little about their obligations. It also shows some jealousy towards those carefree people who walk slowly and hurry less than most of us do.
When I first read about the term of slow living, this expression came into my mind, but this time differently. Yes, those who walk slowly gain more out of their lives. They are stress free and pay attention to the everyday beauty we all usually leave unnoticed.
But slow living does not mean that you choose to live life in slow motion. Let’s have a closer look at what slow living is and how it benefits your life.
This post contains affiliate links. This means I may make a small commission if you buy something at no additional cost to you. Read full disclosure here.
Table of Contents
- What is Slow Living?
- How Slow Living Benefits Your Life
- Final Thoughts on How Slow Living Benefits Your Life
What is Slow Living?
The term Slow Living is related to the Slow Food movement, which started in Italy in 1980. This movement emphasizes on how much healthier and richer food is when is prepared slowly with locally grown ingredients compared to how unhealthy “fast food” is. Slow food means that preparation, cooking and eating include joy shared among those who eat, family, friends, etc. Food is a celebration of food and life itself and not another necessity for survival.
Slow living is taking time to value life for what it is and what is more important to you. Carl Honore, the author of “In Praise of Slowness” defines slow living as “It is not about doing everything at a snail’s pace. It’s about seeking to do everything at the right speed. Savoring the hours and minutes rather than just counting them. Doing everything as well as possible, instead of as fast as possible. It’s about maximizing quality over quantity in everything from work to food to parenting to sex.”
Slow living has nothing to do with the speed of things but with setting the right priorities. It means to identify what is more important each time and value the time you offer for it. It is about doing everything as best as possible and not doing as much as possible.
Slow living does not mean that you quit your job or move to a deserted island. The concepts of slow living can be implemented by everyone and everywhere. Slow living means you focus your attention on those things that matter the most and you do those things as good as possible.
How Slow Living Benefits Your Life
1. Better Mental and Physical Health
When you decide to live a slow life, you no longer feel the need to rush from one thing to the other. You do not care to do everything, which results in less stress and anxiety and consequently to better mental health.
When stress levels are low automatically your physical health becomes better since there is less tension, no high blood pressure, fewer headaches etc. Living a slow life means also that you appreciate yourself and decide to take breaks when you need them instead of burning out yourself. By appreciating yourself more, you take care of him by watching your diet and getting some exercise, which both contribute to the improvement of your physical health.
“Slow living provides an opportunity to step back, pay attention, and question the ways we use technology, to recalibrate our relationship with the constantly switched-on, logged-in world.”Brooke McAlary, SLOW
2. Deeper and More Meaningful Relationships
By deciding to live a slow life, you take time to appreciate your relationships with those who matter the most in your life. By doing so, you value the time you spend with them by offering them your foul attention and actively listening to what they have to say.
When you slow down your rhythms instead of trying to fit everything in a small time frame, you can communicate better with your loved ones and connect with them in a deeper and more meaningful way.
3. Increased Productivity
Although there was a time when multitasking was considered an asset, studies have proven that humans are extremely bad at multitasking. The accuracy in performance decreases when somebody attempts multitasking.
The choice to live a slow life means that you know how to better prioritize your tasks and work on each one fully focused. You value the time you spend for each task by being self -discipline, more creative and productive.
4. Better and Deeper Experiences
When you live a slow life, you pay more attention to whatever you do each time and experience everything to the fullest. You are more present in each moment of your life, thus you can feel each one of them more deeply.
5. Let Go Of Expectations Of Others
Deciding to live a slow life means that you decide to live life according to what is meaningful to you. You relief yourself from other people’s expectations and you let go of this image inside your mind of how things and life should be. What you decide is to live a slow and simple life in which you are grateful for what you already have.
You understand how meaningless it is to compare yourself with others while you set yourself free to explore new options. Once you are no longer trapped in a rat race, you are free to get that job you really enjoy doing, although it does not pay you as much as others.
Slow living offers you the chance to explore yourself and what is that you truly want for yourself. In other words, it offers you a way to explore your own path to happiness and your definition of success.
6. Become Happier
Once you live a slow life, life is no longer meaningless. Life is no longer a race where you try to do as much as possible as fast as possible. You no longer feel stressed. Your life is a life where you can enjoy each experience and interaction with other people.
The gift of time is offered to you and you decide to keep your energy for the things and the people you most care about. You can pay attention and nurture the important relationships of your life.
There is no longer pressure to do everything and please everyone. Money is not what you wish to chase anymore. You decide to live a happy life within your means while you let go of all the materialistic unnecessary needs. Your deeper needs and desires become your priorities, which lead you to a happier and more fulfilling life.
“Be a curator of your life. Slowly cut things out until you’re left only with what you love, with what’s necessary, with what makes you happy.”LEO BABAUTA
Final Thoughts on How Slow Living Benefits Your Life
Slow living is more like an adoption of a whole new philosophy to approach life and yourself. Among the benefits of slow living are your improved physical and mental health, deeper and more meaningful interpersonal relationships, and increased productivity in whatever you work on.
Through slow living, you experience life in a better and more deeply manner and you no longer are a slave to other people’s expectations from you. Because of all the above, you live a happier and more fulfilling life.
“The great benefit of slowing down is reclaiming the time and tranquility to make meaningful connections–with people, with culture, with work, with nature, with our own bodies and minds”Carl Honoré, In Praise of Slowness: Challenging the Cult of Speed
Further Reading on Slow Living
Can you think of more benefits of slow living?
I would love to read your thoughts in the comments below.
If you liked this post, share it.
To read more posts, like this one subscribe to my mailing list.