Moving slowly…

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Sometimes we just need to take life more slowly, and enjoy the moment we’re in. In a world where everything seems to be about not having time, we need to really take our time – at least occasionally.  In yoga, we vary our pace, moving dynamically at times, and at others we move slowly and carefully. We certainly can’t rush meditation – it just takes the time it takes.  An antidote to the rat-race. But how do we bring this quality into the rest of our lives?

Instead of driving somewhere that’s just around the corner, maybe we could walk, cycle or jog there.  It will take longer, but how much better it can make you feel!  Instead of microwaving a ready meal, or opening a jar of sauce, perhaps – now and then – we could cook the whole meal from scratch.  Instead of the car wash, could we find half an hour to wash the car ourselves, and burn off some calories too?!  I recently read an article by a gardener, advocating the use of hand tools.  More time-consuming, but really getting down to the ground, really seeing the garden at grass-roots level – literally.  More eco-friendly than weedkillers, that’s for sure.

When we rush through our lives, we build up more and more stress about how little time we have, about where we should have been 5 minutes ago, and we miss the joy inherent in the moment.

When we take our time to do things slowly, we can truly enhance our lives.  Recently, I prepared some semi-dried tomatoes for a special meal – two hours roasting in a low oven, with fresh herbs, to add to a wonderful Ottolenghi salad (my favourite cookbook of the moment!).  OK, you can buy sun-dried tomatoes in a jar, but these really were so much better, and the smell as they cooked filled my whole home, whetting my appetite for the meal ahead.  The task wasn’t difficult or arduous, but a total pleasure. I’ve also just started experimenting with making my own sourdough bread – making the starter and ‘feeding’ it every day.  Definitely a ‘slow-food’ procedure.  But again, not difficult, not particularly time-consuming, and working towards – hopefully! – a quality loaf in the end…..

So it’s not always just about the end result, but about the whole process.  Not rushing to the finish line, but enjoying the whole event.

What are the ways you slow down and take your time? Leave your comments below….

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6 responses »

  1. In this time in life with a particularly active toddler, ‘slow’ does not feature in my life. Even since having children though, I realised how much I need to have time to just be, to slow down and just be. No noise, no demands, just be…Maybe in the near future I will have time to cook the elaborate Ottolenghi recipes too! (have the book, but not time!)

    • It is so hard to find time to slow down when your children are young, but just recognising the need is a good place to start. Even if that time to be is just a few seconds….. It does get easier, and then the Ottolenghi book will come into its own!

  2. Hello fellow yogi,

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  3. I’m slowing down by working on listening. I like to jump to conclusions because it’s quicker. In yoga class, when I’m not rushing and I spend time listening to the instructor instead if guessing what they are going to say next, it betters the quality of my practice and slows down the busy mind. That also applies to my day to day life too. Slow down and decompress a little!

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