Life starts out slow but as you age time speeds up. It’s easy to get lost in a moment. All it takes is a blink of an eye for years to flash past us. If you don’t take a few minutes to appreciate everything around you now and then, you might find you miss out on the best years of your life. In this article, we’re going to share how to slow down and enjoy life while you’re still around. So, let’s slow down together.
400+ Free Guided Meditation PracticesDeclutter The Mind will help you live more mindfully and understand your mind better with a growing library of free guided meditation practices, courses, and daily meditation practices.
15 Ways to Slow Down and Enjoy Life
1. Life is about the journey not the destination
Life starts out pretty slow when we’re kids. We find time drags on and on. Yet, as we get older, time speeds up. Really fast. To slow down, you need to realize life is about the journey. The destination is eternal sleep. So, while you’re here make the most of the moment. Spend time with friends and family. Take a sick day at work to do the things that make you happy. Go on that vacation. Make time for all those little moments you cherish. Don’t get so caught up in office politics or family drama. Those things won’t matter in a few years from now anyways. Just remember, make time for the people you care about because they won’t be here forever.
2. Spend 10 minutes meditating
You can slow down by meditating for ten minutes each day. Of course, you can meditate for even longer if you choose. But taking at least ten minutes each day to focus on your breath is a great way to slow down. It’s easy to get stressed at work or while doing errands at home. But when you spend time daily doing guided meditation you slow your thoughts and live more in the present as a result. When you’re in the moment, you’ll enjoy the quality of your time much more. Time ticks on naturally instead of sped up. Peacefulness can help ensure that time moves just right.
3. Pause before speaking
To slow down, take a moment to pause before speaking. The words can slip out of our mouths at lightning speed when we’re upset or in pain. But once those words are out, you won’t be able to catch them and hide them. They’re out in the open. And the response you get back might be worse than you can imagine. When you meditate regularly, it becomes easier to stay calm when things get heated. You can get better at carefully selecting the words you communicate. Also, when you pause before speaking, you tend to remember that the people you speak to matter and you aren’t willing to burn a bridge with them over a bad moment.
4. Plan relaxing activities
A fun way to slow down is to plan ultra relaxing activities. Instead of going on a vacation filled with non-stop sightseeing, you might choose a two week Caribbean vacation where you rest by the beach, swim in the pool, enjoy a few good meals, and more. If a vacation isn’t in the cards for you for budgetary reasons, you can find activities at home that relax you. Maybe you play some online chess. Or you ask your partner for a massage. When you plan activities to relax you, you’ll naturally slow down. When activities excite you, time flies. So, to slow things down, choose activities that slow time down for you, such as reading a book.
5. Enjoy the little things
You can slow down by enjoying the little things life offers. Stop and smell the roses so to speak. It’s about noticing how happy your children are when they’re playing. Or seeing that your husband always kisses you on the forehead when you sleep in the morning. It’s about savoring and cherishing all those little moments that you find joy in your day to day. When you notice those little things, man, they make you feel good. And you won’t be desperate to hold onto all of the good moments because you felt all of their goodness as it happened. Appreciating all those little moments is what makes life wonderful.
6. Go for walks
There’s two types of people who go for walks: the slow walkers and the power walkers. You don’t need to be a slow walker to slow down in life, though. If you are a power walker, however, you’ll need to have things capture your attention while walking so you don’t miss out on all of the beauty around you. Did you notice the little bird waddling on his feet? Or that turtle that just lay eggs in front of you? Or that family of geese walking towards the water? Oomph. There’s so much beauty and magic in nature. Don’t be so rushed to get back home that you miss out on the beauty of life during your mindful walk to help you slow down in life.
7. Try tai chi or yoga
To slow down, you can try some calming exercises like tai chi or yoga. In both these exercises, you’ll need to mindfully move your body. For those of you who live fast-paced lifestyles, doing these exercises may seem unnatural to you at first due to how slow you’ll be moving. However, by doing the hour and half tai chi exercises, you’ll have the chance to truly know how to slow things down. If you do yoga, consider hot yoga which adds a bit more heat to the mix making time feel even slower for you. When you exert your body for a class, time can feel like it never ends, especially if you keep checking the clock due to exhaustion. So, exercising can really help you slow down as it can make you feel exerted.
8. Cook your meals and chew slowly
Instead of ordering fast food, take the time to cook your meals. Your patience will be tested, especially if you’re hungry and want your meal to be finished quickly. Time can slow down when cooking and carefully putting all your ingredients in. When it comes to eating your food, you’ll want to practice mindful eating instead of gobbling your food up quickly. Consider chewing each bite thirty times. Savoring every bite carefully. We often eat too fast and practically inhale our food. However, for good digestion chewing your food thoroughly is best for your health. And it’s a good way to slow down.
9. Listen to calming music
When you need to slow down, the music you listen to can help slow time down for you. You can listen to calming music, classical music, or even meditation music to help slow things down for you. The songs you listen to don’t need to be sad, they can be beautiful songs with strings that help you feel more alive. Getting lost in the music will allow you to feel the melody in your heart awakening your soul. Picking songs that uplift you, such as positive songs can help you have a more positive perspective on your day. The songs you listen to don’t need to be slow for you to slow down. They just need to shift your focus to the present moment.
10. Practice active listening
Time speeds up when we’re overthinking in our heads. Often, in conversations with others we miss out on what people are saying because our brains are coming up with what to interject with. Instead, practice active listening. Take in what people are saying, how they’re feeling, and what they really mean. Truly try to understand their point of view. Feel their emotions. Deeply. Then, once they’ve finished speaking, carefully think about what to respond with. You’ll be better able to connect with someone when you actively listen to them. And when you listen carefully, you’ll find that you’ll slow down your thought process.
11. Journal your thoughts
To slow down, consider writing in a journal. You can use journal prompts to guide your thought process or simply fill empty lined pages with all your wild thoughts and ideas. Journaling is your opportunity to reflect on your thoughts and how you feel about them. You can think through life’s hardships and obstacles and those wonderful moments you have. Maybe one day, you’ll turn your journal entries into a memoir. Or maybe you’ll look back on hardships you’ve faced with a sense of pride that you managed yourself as well as you could’ve with what you knew back then. Taking the time to reflect allows you to slow down to ensure you make great decisions in the future that you can be proud of.
12. Remove events from your calendar
Being busy prevents you from slowing down and enjoying life. When you’re on the go, go, go treadmill of life, everything blurs together. You have kids’ birthday parties to attend, family events, sporting events, and all those other activities that drastically fill up your time fast. When you de-prioritize the events that don’t matter or benefit you in any way, you open yourself up to preventing the blurring of life. Having gaps in your day can be a great way to slow down, be mindful, and actually enjoy the things you want to do. So, go to your Google Calendar and eliminate some of the events that distract your focus and reduce your happiness. Spend time with the people you want, doing the activities you enjoy.
13. Have a do nothing day
Not every day needs to be productive. Having a do nothing day once a month or when you can swing it, can be a great way to slow down and enjoy life. You don’t always have to do a million errands, cross items off your to-do list, or hustle hard. Prioritizing rest and relaxation can be a healthy and necessary thing to do. Maybe you sleep-in that day, or spend the day on the couch watching movies with your family. You could do things that allow you to rest and relax without having to worry about anything. Recharging your batteries before they run out of charge is necessary. People need rest. And most of us are overworked, running on empty all the time. So, when you want to slow down, pick a day where you’ll do nothing but rest and recover.
14. Be in the moment with your family
One of the ways to slow down is to be in the moment with your family. There’s so many opportunities to cherish your loved ones. Making that phone call to call family members to see how they’re doing on a regular basis will allow you to have so many good memories and conversations while people are still alive. Playing with your kids when they’re young and demanding your attention is crucial because before you know it they want to play with their friends instead. Hosting family events to get everyone together will also be a great way to spend time with people and cherish them. Time slows down when you feel grateful for the people in your life.
15. Write handwritten letters
If you want things to slow down, you can write handwritten letters to people. Typing out kind messages on social media is a fast way to connect with people to tell them why you appreciate them. Writing pen to paper takes more time and requires more mindful effort to do. You can write holiday cards, Easter cards, birthday cards, thinking of you cards, and more to make people feel special and feel appreciated. Plus, they’ll have a physical item that they can hold onto: a card. Writing by hand is a great way to slow down and take a moment to appreciate loved ones.
We’ve shared 15 ways to slow down and enjoy life. The goal when it comes to slowing down should be to become more mindful and appreciative of all the things you have. It’s easy to get lost in the hustle and bustle of life, rushing to the next event or activity of the day. But when you choose to slow down, you can allow for more good moments with the people you truly care about. If you want to slow down more, you can sign up for Declutter The Mind’s meditation app or try some meditation courses to help you live more presently.