A few slow thoughts

The slow movement is a cultural reaction to the idea that more is more or that faster is always better.

Here are a few more thoughts on the subject.

Slow is:

  • About choosing to slow down the pace – to savour the minutes rather than wishing time away.

  • About thinking of ways to get more from less, to aim for quality over quantity and to embrace better over more.

  • It’s about doing things as well as possible, instead of as fast as possible.

The international slow movement started with the Italian Carlo Petrini's slow food movement and spread to other areas of life and culture.

Achieving slow can be easier said than done. There are lots of things about modern life that can make slow seem tricky to make happen.

Here are some of the challenges to be aware of and to overcome.

  • Statistics show that people in paid work are working longer hours than previous generations.

  • The cost living – for example the rising cost of housing in New Zealand's main city centres means that most families can’t live on just one income.

  • Social media is addictive and we can get into the habit of always checking what others are doing or posting online.Fear of missing out can cause us to be anxious about what others are doing and to feel that we are not keeping up.

  • Urban sprawl and more cars on New Zealand roads every year means we’re just spending more time simply getting places everyday.A culture of relentless consumerism is all around us. You can see this in the modern habit of treating shopping as a leisure activity.

Despite the challenges, slow is well worth pursuing. Here are some of the reasons for slow:

  • The pressures of modern life can leave us feeling that our lives are overly hectic or emotionally out of kilter. Slow is a way to counter this.

  • Multi- tasking can mean we get more done but the downside of it is that we don’t get to immerse ourselves in the moment. We can find that we never allow ourselves to focus on just that one thing. Slow gives us permission.

  • We want to find simple ways to restore the balance.

  • We are looking to leading a mindful life.

  • We want to 'be there’ for the significant moments of our lives

  • Choosing to live intentionally – choosing to do things that are ‘done on purpose’ rather than just being passive or reacting to others

  • Living slow is about learning to savour the simple pleasures of life, make a difference for good and to find deeper and more meaningful connections with those around us. Ultimately, what can be more important than that?

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