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The Power of Slowing Down: Embracing the Benefits of Taking It Easy



It's so easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of daily life. From our email inboxes constantly filling up and shuffling from one family activity to the next to the never-ending list of household chores and that text message you forgot to reply to 3 days ago...


What if I told you that slowing down is essential to a healthier, happier, and more fulfilling life?


We’re so preoccupied with what we are going to do next that we aren’t taking time to enjoy what’s going on in front of us.


But the concept of slowing down can seem counterintuitive to most of us.


However, taking the time to slow down and savor the moment can have numerous benefits for our mental, physical, and emotional well-being.


Here are a few major benefits of slowing down:


Reduced Stress


When we're constantly rushing from one task to the next, our stress levels can skyrocket. Slowing down allows us to take a step back, breathe, and focus on the present moment. By embracing a slower pace, we can reduce feelings of anxiety and overwhelm, leading to a greater sense of calm and tranquility.


Improved Focus and Clarity


When we're constantly multitasking and trying to juggle multiple responsibilities, our ability to concentrate suffers. Slowing down allows us to give our full attention to the task at hand, leading to improved focus and clarity.


More Meaningful Relationships


In our fast-paced lives, it's easy to neglect the people around us. Slowing down allows us to prioritize our relationships and connect on a deeper level with loved ones. Whether we're spending quality time together, engaging in meaningful conversations, or simply being present, slowing down can strengthen our bonds and foster a greater sense of connectedness to the people who mean the most to us.


Improved Physical Health


Constantly being on the go can take a toll on our physical health, especially our nervous system. Slowing down gives our bodies the rest and relaxation they need to recharge and rejuvenate. It also helps lower our blood pressure and stress levels making us overall feel more grounded throughout the day.


Greater Appreciation for Life


When you hit the pause button on tasks, you begin to notice the beauty in everyday moments that we often miss when we are busy running from one thing to the next. Taking time to slow down allows us to be more present and appreciate the little things in life.


So what are some practical ways to slow down your life? I’m so glad you asked...


1. Not Disturb


Putting your phone on “do not disturb” can improve overall well-being. Constant notifications and feeling like we are always “on call” can lead to heightened stress levels wreaking havoc on our immune system, sleep cycle, and nervous system. DND allows us to be more present and reduces the mental toll associated with constantly feeling connected through technology.


2. Mindfulness


When we are fully present in the moment, we become more aware of the details of our experiences. Doing a guided meditation, taking a walk in nature, or simply taking in the beauty of your surroundings are all easy ways to incorporate mindfulness into your everyday life.


3. Intentionally practicing gratitude


The benefits of practicing gratitude are endless. People who take time to reflect on the positives in their lives are generally happier, more compassionate, and feel more connected. From celebrating a promotion to something as simple as enjoying a fresh sip of coffee, practicing gratitude is an excellent way to take a much-needed pause during the day to slow down.


4. Plan it out


Whether you’re using a calendar app or an old-school planner, planning out your week can help significantly for those of us who carry a heavy mental load. Planning it out was personally a game-changer for me.


Usually, I like to pick a specific day, like Sunday, and plan out my week ahead. From swim lessons to work meetings to making time to return texts or emails, planning it out can help you look at your week more strategically and make you feel at ease knowing there’s time for everything throughout the week that you want to accomplish. After planning it out, you might be surprised to realize that you actually have more time than you initially thought.


5. Gentle reminders


Unfortunately, in today’s fast-paced world, the concept of slowing down may not come naturally to most of us. Making a conscious effort to remind yourself to slow down throughout the day or setting a few alarms at various times is a great way to take a step back and take a few deep breaths. Eventually, as you become more aware of your body, the concept of slowing down will start to feel more natural.


So why not take a break, breathe, and embrace the power of slowing down?


Your mind, body, and soul will thank you for it.


 

About the author:


Therapist and LCSW Carrie Summers of Wildflower Healing and Wellness defines a safe space.


Carrie has a person-centered, strengths-based, and trauma-informed practice at Wildflower Healing & Wellness in Wheaton, guiding her clients with a warm but direct approach.


Carrie supports adults and teens who are working through:


  • relationship challenges (dating, divorce, marriage, friendships)

  • perinatal and postpartum stressors

  • religious trauma

  • life transitions

  • narcissistic abuse

  • ADHD


Reach out to Carrie today at 630-233-4814 or via email carrie@wildflowerwithinyou.com


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