Five Ways To Live Slow (After a Stressful Season)
We all need more ways to live slow. But how 2020 played out was not on my radar.
Now, I know this may be premature for most. But my home state, Georgia, is beta testing this re-opening apparently. Thanks, I guess?
Regardless of your thoughts on when it’s best to unlock this lockdown, your time is coming.
Nick and I have spent the past few days talking about what changes we want to keep alive after things go back to “normal.”
A Few Ways To Live Slow:
- The kids doing chores
- Meal planning
- Family walks
- Eating more cookies
- Not being in a hurry
I like this list. However, none of it will happen unless we intentionally pivot. The idea of going back to “normal” is wrongfully assumed.
Who wants normal anyway? Life in a normal year feels rushed, overextended, foggy, and often misleading.
I am sure many of you can agree that many GOOD things have come from this time. It’s forced families to step back and revisit what’s most important.
Perhaps you’ve pushed everything else off the table and JUST do what’s most important. Maybe you’ve taken some pressure off yourself.
You have your own story and we know it’s unique. Either way, these two things will cultivate goodness:
Your year may not have been as glamorous as yours truly (sarcasm intended, see picture above). Many of our days were “PJ and movies-in-living-room-fort” days.
Even more, days were “let’s only do 15 minutes of school today then go play outside” days. And, my personal favorite, several days were “Mom’s clocked out, daddy is handling bedtime” days.
Once I tuned out the media noise and operated with enough self-control to NOT read every terrifying article, my anxiety simmered and I was able to pinpoint the positives of this experience. (You too?)
But now I’m nervous again.
I’m nervous that I will miss my chance to make good from this bad. I don’t want to go back to the way it was. I want Laura 2.0 to emerge from this year.
Not a Laura that has learned 4 new languages, built a Pinterest-worthy she-shed from scraps, lost 7.8874 lbs because she’s fasted from sugar… nope, none of that. I’m not that girl.
Laura 2.0 be more awake. I hope she will only take what God gives her. I don’t want anything He doesn’t give me. I want to keep things slow and simple.
All the hustle and bustle I thought were vital pre-coronavirus faded away. I’ve slept better at night knowing the world and I agree that in times of crisis, we all only have time to do the most important things.
To prepare myself to re-enter the world and make it better this go round, I’ve come up with 5 ways to live slow after quarantine.
If slow living isn’t your thing, you do you.
But for me and my people, we enjoy feeling equally productive and at rest (It is possible, says a recovering workaholic)
Five Ways To Live Slow (no matter the season)
Tell me, do any of these 5 things make you stop and think?
- Do less.
It’s not rocket science. If you need to do less, then do less. Take a genuine census of how many hats you wear. Prioritize them 1-10 and cut the bottom third out.
It’s okay to disconnect. Stop the dopamine addiction to check for likes/comments/affirmations/validations (I am the worst at this).
Promise yourself you will guesstimate how many hours a day you spend with your phone in hand and then cut that in half.
I’ve found that my family has a rhythm. Instead of writing down what I thought should occupy every second of our days, I sat back and observed when they were playful, curious, hungry, cranky, cuddly.
I let them show me through actions what their natural daily rhythm needed. Make two-hour blocks on your schedule and write down a flow that brings you and your family peace.
My five-year-old has taught me this. His speech issues have created much frustration for him.
We often have to ask him to repeat himself and he cries, “No one ever listens to me.”
I’ve had to stop, bend down, look him in the eyes and nod to confirm I am present with him. Respect others enough to stop and validate that their words matter.
- Set better goals.
To achieve a live slow lifestyle, one should not misinterpret that as being passive. God wants us to have excellent work ethic and be stewardly with the gifts He’s given us.
So set audacious goals. Be brave. But don’t do what God hasn’t put on your plate. Pick a few things to do with excellence, instead of 50 things to do mediocre.
Reading these reminders is one thing, applying them is another. What can you do in the next week to put into action these 5 things?
Jesus wants us to chill out. Keep the main thing the main thing.
Don’t let this historical season come and go without a positive change in your life.
And I hope that change includes practicing a love fast and live slow mentality.