It has been a year since I started Blushing Lately in the hope of it leading to a more thoughtful, considered life. Inspired by the slow living movement, I wanted to embrace things that add focus to my everyday existence and bring some meaning to what I do. One year later, my understanding of slow living has evolved. Much like the concept of transnationalism that has been the core topic of my MA, slow living seems to have many contested meanings to us all. Quite literally, it can mean slowing down in life. But what does that actually entail? Not all of us are able to give up our day jobs, move to the countryside and spend our days tending to the chickens. Although, admittedly, that sounds like an ideal life. Slow living can be embraced in smaller, subtler ways as well.
Noticing the little details
Whether it’s observing the way sunlight filters through trees onto the ground below, the intricate pattern on a teacup or stopping to capture beautiful wildflowers in a local field, paying attention to little details can help to bring us into the moment and feel more connected to our surroundings.
Making time for simple moments
A book enjoyed in the bath, lighting a candle in the evening and making a cup of loose leaf tea are all such simple moments that can transform a day from ordinary to something a little more special. Simple moments are just that: simple.
Spending time outside
Taking a longer but more scenic route, walks in the forest at weekends or visiting somewhere beautiful to photograph can instantly bring a sense of calm and slow. Joining the National Trust a few years ago was the best decision. Another favourite of ours is walking to the pub in our local village. Anything that involves fresh air can do wonders.
Pursuing what we enjoy
Slow living is often associated with making and creating, from scrapbooks to our own soap and candles. But as Kayte from Simple and Season stated, creative pursuits do not have to be limited to making and creating with our hands to fit the definition of slow living. There are many other things that can be enjoyed creatively that don’t involve crafts or baking. Browsing book stores, reading poetry, wine tasting and simply consuming creative material all come to mind. It’s about allowing ourselves to enjoy what we actually enjoy.
What ideas do you associate with slow living?