Slow living

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What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.

William Henry Davis

In past few years, I reviewed my life and eliminated every habit that pulled me down, decluttered my house, my wardrobe, my email and my mind. Now I know that it is a continuous process. I invite you too to plunge in this eternal river of change! Here are few of my personal experiences that have helped me improve.

One webpage at a time

Earlier I used to open so many webpages and wor simultaneously on all of them. I thought that this multitasking would help to accomplish more. But it took me a long time to realize that I was more confused, anxious and the quality of my work was pathetic. After much frustration, I decided to work on one single webpage at a time, following a strict rule to keep only one webpage open. I do less work now, with better quality. And it helped me to make an incredible discovery. I realized that 90% of the work that I did was not required AT ALL!!!

This web decluttering is a small change, but it helped me to see the tremendous advantage of simplicity. And simplicity in one part of your life radiates to the entire process of living. It took me a long time and much frustration to learn this. Hope you reach here sooner and make your life effortless! 

Switch off mobile

I feel mobile phones resemble a kind of subtle infection that makes our minds very, very sick! While practicing minimalism, I realized that I check my mobile phone every 10-15 minutes. And only after I started getting mentally tired of my habit, did I realized that I am addicted to my mobile phone. I would get frustrated if there were no new message. New messages became as good as fresh new breath, and I would feel suffocated if they were not there. And this frustration helped me to take a big decision – to switch off my mobile for some time. Whenever there was an urge to check the messages, I would tell myself that it is switched off and there will be no new messages. I first tried it at night. It helped me to stop checking my mobile as the first thing in the morning. 

Remember Matrix trilogy! A machine should not become a dominating force in our lives. Use a mobile, don’t let the mobile use you. It’s time to set yourself free!

Mindful eating

It’s been five years since I stopped watching TV altogether. When I look at the value TV serials or news added to my life over the years, I felt that it was more of a time waste than anything else. There was a time when I felt that eating food is a mundane chore, so let’s do more at the same time, by watching TV. Worse still, I used to watch news and crime patrol blah blah while eating. I stayed away from home for two years as a student. One day, I was starving, without any food for the past 24 hours. Lack of money is the best teacher in the world. I could afford to buy only a small quantity of roasted peanuts. And the moment I put the peanuts in my mouth, I felt the ultimate bliss that most of us miss every day, as we work on electronic gadgets while eating. Mindful eating can help us in many ways. It helps us to chew food correctly, to be aware of its taste, to stop over-eating, avoid false psychological hunger, mid-meal snacking and compulsive eating, etc. Let’s eat mindfully, respect the precious food and our stomach!

Mindful Living

Usually, humans improve only after they stumble over a problem. However, most of our sufferings are self-chosen. What if we can see a prospective problem and steer away from it. Driving life is no different than driving a vehicle. And the stillness of mind, free from overthinking, and colored vision, is excellent, whether you are driving a car or your life! Mindfulness is a way to stop, relax, and review. It helps you to become more alive in the present moment. You develop the capacity to make the right choices, declutter, and simplify your life.  I have tried meditation for the past 18 years, without much change in me. And this helped me learn that meditation is only a tool to achieve Mindfulness. In fact, you are better off if you don’t have time to close your eyes and meditate. Try being mindful right now, right here. Mindfulness is not another chore to finish; it is something that makes you alive, just like breathing, if you allow it to happen on its own. If I have to choose one habit that can completely turn-around you as a person, it will be Mindfulness. Try it and feel the magic!

Make a list of achievements

For a long time, I would make a to-do list. I thought that it would help me to stay motivated and push me to work better. However, it became a depressing exercise as there will be a new load every day. I lost sight of what I did yesterday because of there a new push daily. Besides, there are times when you are not able to complete your to-do list. And so often we just give up. I thought that to pull myself to achievements is a better idea than to push myself to work. And hence, I started making a list of accomplishments rather than a to-do list. Every day I would add more achievements and my confidence and energy grew with the list. To do is a fast track pushy habit, that might ultimately push you out of sanity. Better go slow and list down what flew in naturally. I can bet that it will have you happier and help you achieve more effortlessly!

Let’s have less work and more leisure! Best wishes

Leisure

What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.

No time to stand beneath the boughs
And stare as long as sheep or cows.

No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.

No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night.

No time to turn at Beauty’s glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance.

No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began.

A poor life this is if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.
William Henry Davies

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