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The Allure of Slow Life

There is something I have always admired about a person that lives slowly. You know what I'm talking about. The person that doesn't seem to have life pulling at them from every direction. The person that appears calm and collected even in hectic situations, that doesn't mind the time it takes to accomplish something.  In a culture where busy is exalted and fast is expected, it's hard to unwind or even fathom a slower-paced lifestyle. 


I chuckled when I came across a response to this fast-paced world by a guy named Christopher Richards who humorously expressed his passion for slow by starting the International Institute of Not Doing Much (IINDM)He wittily warns that Minimal Effort is "an advanced concept and may not be immediately graspable by those new to slowing down." 


I was also inspired by a blog post written by author Stephen Mansfield, ironically posted on the day I arrived in Nashville.  In it he describes a couple instances in which a back injury that forced him to walk slowly through an airport opened up opportunities for him to talk to people he may not have normally had the opportunity to engage with. "All I had done was slow down, but my pace said to her that something was right about my life." He became convinced that "being slow sent signals and allowed connections [he] couldn’t have imagined otherwise."


Well in this season of life I am in search of my own version of slow. Now don't get me wrong, I am a 30-year-old recent MBA grad who feels like I'm about to elevate my career to great heights. My energy level and desire to succeed has never been stronger.  A big part of my personality has been a strong internal propulsion to be excellent in everything I do.  I thrive on drive. However, I am also choosing to take the opportunity in this season of transition to find a balance between the two.  Can I have an active life while still enjoying the space and ability to be like Mr. Richards and not do much?  When this season of unemployment ends will I go back to living a frantic, busy lifestyle as I have been accustomed to for so long in California?  What about when I have children one day, what type of lifestyle will I impart to them? 


In response to this, I am taking the opportunity in a new city to deliberately establish new habits for myself.  It's one of the perks of getting a fresh start and part of the excitement of moving to the South. For me it's new, healthy eating and exercise habits. It's a good night's sleep.  It's a lot of quiet time with God.  It's self reflection at leisure. Right now my life is uncluttered and simple.  There is space.  There is time.  There are little to no distractions. I get to explore my own ideas, thoughts, and dreams.  I like it this way.  The challenge is how to maintain this. I wonder if it's even possible. 

Though I don't have the answer, I choose not to wrap myself up with worry about it either.  All I know is I am incredibly thankful for the season I am in right now. And I'm choosing to enjoy each day as it comes. 

“Always remember to slow down in life; live, breathe, and learn; take a look around you whenever you have time and never forget everything and every person that has the least place within your heart.” 



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