Slow Down and Live

Slow Down and LiveThis morning I saw a post on Facebook that really hit home; it was titled “Slow Down and Live.”  A portion of it read, “Many of us rush through our days as well as through our meals. Often we let ourselves get so busy that we do not enjoy what we are doing or what we are eating. We swallow life in great gulps instead of savoring it moment by moment.

Hurry and busyness are forms of self-will. Deluded by an exaggerated sense of our own importance, we deem it crucial to perform all tasks and activities according to our personal schedule. Impatient with traffic tie-ups, other people’s slowness, or unavoidable delays, we make ourselves tense and miserable by refusing to accept life as it comes.”

Any chance you can relate? I certainly can. I know I’m guilty of being a fast eater, and if the truth be told, I’m probably guilty of ‘swallowing life in great gulps,’ as this morning’s post so perfectly pointed out! I seriously doubt that I’m alone here, and I’m more than willing to bet that most of us aren’t exactly ‘savoring it moment by moment.’  But how much more enjoyable would life be if we were?

I’m not really good at sitting still; I like to have something to do . . . or maybe it’s that I always feel like there is something to do. Of course there’s never a lack of laundry, the bathtub could use a scrub down, the car needs serviced and more than likely there are one or two things we need from the grocery store, etc., etc. – you moms know all about the sort of ‘stuff’ that might always needs doing!

Busyness is one thing, and often times, it’s legitimate household tasks that do need to be addressed, but for me, so often it’s additional obligations I’ve taken on and or self-assigned tasks that aren’t critical to the well-being of our family or anyone else for that matter! But then there’s the ‘hurry,’ which is a completely separate issue. Why is it we are all in such a rush? What’s the hurry? Have you every actually stopped to think about it? Are we all in a hurry because we are all so busy? Could it be because we keep piling more and more obligations and expectations and activities and need/wants into our lives? We’re rushing around in this busy, sometimes frantic, attempt to have this ‘great life,’ when in fact, we’re missing out on a million wonderful moments because we’re too busy and in too much of a hurry.

What are we doing?

I spent three months in Italy in 2010, and the Italians are on to something.  It’s like there is no such thing as being in a rush while in Italy. Literally. To an American, it’s nearly bizarre. In fact, if honest, it was sometimes irritating. Irritating and absolutely wonderful. Why? Because I think on the whole we’re an impatient breed. We’re so used to our fast-paced lives that when we stumble across a slow-paced, less-stressed and more easy-going mindset or attitude, sadly it takes some adjusting to. Dinner in Italy is a time for true fellowship with friends or family. It’s almost as if everything rotates around the evening’s dinner. You eat, you enjoy conversation, you talk, you listen, you laugh, you enjoy your food. You savor the moments.

We all want the best for our children, for our spouses, our friends and even ourselves. We tend to agree to too much, over-committing and stretching ourselves too thin. Our motives are good, and hopefully pure, but are they keeping us from achieving what we’re setting out to accomplish?

Let’s slow down and live a little.

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