Slow living is a romantic notion, one I’ve been on a quest to understand. I close my eyes and picture myself in a linen dress, making bread from scratch in my fabulous kitchen; not a care in the world. I see myself with time to read, a lot. Time to keep plants alive and thriving, and time to thoughtfully consider each word in my head, even my thoughts are slow.
What I pictured as a slow life equaled a life of ease.
That in lies my mistake; a mindset that has taken me off track and consistently disappointed me. Ease was the one thing that seemed to escape me at every sunrise and every sunset. Slow living became synonymous with uneventful. I had to clear my schedule to get inspired. I had to clear my schedule to be creative. Except in that, my problem. My schedule is un-clearable.
I work a full-time job. I have a house to look after. I have a magazine to jumpstart and champion ahead. I have friends who I want to invest time into. I have the very real natural gift of being utterly exhausted by 10pm. There’s not time in the day to clear my schedule. Oh, I forgot to say feed myself and exercise. Those are precious add-ons in the busy day to day.
Without time to be slow, except for the occasional free weekend, my slow living dreams seemed like a distant goal. One that I didn’t expect to happen anytime soon. But. One revelation a few days ago set me free.
Slow living doesn’t mean easy living.
What looks “slow” in photographs took hours to prepare, it took grocery shopping, dish washing and a more than a few clean ups. The well-made linen dress that represents quality assurance took incredible precision to prepare for that slow moment, not to mention the knowledge required to complete these feats. That can take years of school, years of practice.
It’s so easy to forget, nothing worth having is easy. If it was, we would all have everything, know everything, be everything. And therefore it would all mean nothing.
If I’m going to pursue the mindset of “slow living” — I want it to take time. I want it to be a challenge. I want to fight for it.
If nothing else, I want to embrace the moments of busy, knowing that I’m working toward a moment of inspiration, realizing that what lies on the other side of hard work is something “slow.”
Slow living does mean unplugging, traveling, taking time to only be inspired. But that’s the 10%. A lifestyle of slow living means finding moments in everyday, and investing time and work into the things that will be worth the effort.
- Grace Taylor, CEO Prvncl Magazine