Practicing Slowness and Being Present

Reprinted with permission from Zen Habits.

In our rush to get through the tasks of our day, to complete our errands and answer emails, to look at the next video or link we find … when do we think we’ll find happiness?

If it’s not here right now, when will it come?

Maybe we think it’ll come when we improve our lives, or meet our goals, or succeed at our business, or finish our college degree. Maybe it’ll come when we go on that next trip, or when we find time to relax. Maybe tomorrow.

Or we could try this:

  • Slow down instead of rushing.
  • Pause to savor the current moment.
  • Really notice everything about the moment, and find small things to appreciate.
  • Be grateful for what there is right here, right now.
  • Allow the things that are bothering you to just be in your life, without fighting with them, without pushing them away.
  • Don’t allow little things to offend you. They’re not worth ruining this moment.

Let the beauty of this moment wash over you like a warm foamy wave.

These are all things we already know. But we don’t actually do them. The key here is practice.

If you don’t practice being present, slowing down, enjoying the moment right now, when will you practice? What are you practicing now instead?

Start your practice this moment.

‘When you live completely in each moment, without expecting anything, you have no idea of time.’ ~Shunryu Suzuki


More Slow Manifestos

In addition to my own Slow Manifesto on this site, there are others within the entire slow “movement”… and I thought you might find them interesting:

In Praise of Slowness (opens in a new window)

Plus, there are links in the post above that can lead you on your journey to slowness.

And, while it’s not really a “manifesto,” I had an article brought to my attention today that falls into the category of “Good Slow Ideas”…

18 Things Everyone Needs To Make Time For Again

You Work 70 – 80 Hours A Week, So What?

I just love it when someone comes up to me and brags about “how they pulled an all-nighter last night”…

Who gives a fuck?

Great, you’re ruining your life, and your health, in the name of a faceless corporation or business that doesn’t really give a shit in the first place (for the most part).

All in the name of some fake “status symbol” you can hold up and get 4 minutes of recognition for.

I mean, think about it… you say this… and really, how much does it mean to other people?

Nothing, except empty platitudes and a pat on the back from your boss who DIDN’T have to pull the all-nighter.

Whoever invented the 40-hour “full-time” work week needed to be shot on sight.

But think about this today…

If you work yourself down to the bone, in the hopes of getting a big promotion or raise at the expense of your health… is it really worth it?

Can you look your family in the eyes and say; “I’m working 80 hours a week and I can ALSO truly be here with you too, because I’m so full of energy AFTER working myself down to the bone, that I can do everything!”

Didn’t think so.