Slow food, slow travel, slow living . . . everywhere you look there’s a slow movement encouraging you to gear back and reconnect with the treasures of life.

Sea changing and tree changing have long been popular trends later in life, but this is too important to put off until you retire. The ceaseless pace of our modern world is exhausting, disconnecting you from the best life has to offer, and from the best in yourself.

Human beings evolved to operate most effectively when we are in tune with the pace of nature. The swaying branches of a large tree, the ebb and flow of the tides, the movement of the sun across the sky—each of these natural rhythms offers a lesson in how to get back in tune with yourself. The frequency of your brainwaves change when you slow down, reflecting the deeper and more complex connections responsible for moments of insight and deeply-satisfying experiences. But if you can’t slow down, these rewards remain out of reach.

Use this simple list of indicators to check if you’re moving too fast…

  • Skipping meals

  • Finishing other people’s sentences

  • Cutting conversations off before their natural end

  • Making assumptions and jumping to conclusions

  • Missing information and making mistakes

  • Running late and leaving things behind

  • Walking fast with your head down

  • Getting frustrated when waiting in a queue

  • Getting frustrated at just about anything!

  • Scrolling through social media images but not reading the posts

  • Worrying constantly about your to-do list, your deadlines and your responsibilities

  • Responding to family members with “not now” or “maybe later”

  • Watching your life pass by in a blur

Few of life’s rich and important experiences unfold at top speed. Slowing down is the key to rest, recovery and replenishing your energy. Slowing down is the recipe for caring, connecting and relating to others. Slowing down is the only way to experience beauty, to learn something new, and to become comfortable in your own skin.

Living slow does not mean losing focus or surrendering control over your world. It just means rediscovering a nourishing balance that enables you to notice fully and respond efficiently, savour deeply and choose swiftly, care completely and decide wisely.

So if this is the life for you, take guidance from these simple but enriching ways to live slow.

This blog includes an extract from Do Less. Be More by Martina Sheehan and Susan Pearse.

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