Slow is my new busy


I’ve realised I’m sick and tired of racing, sick and tired of ‘busy’.

I’m sick of being present for all the things I’m supposed to be doing but being largely absent for myself.

Slow is my new busy.

This realisation has come upon me gradually over the last few months, as I’ve learnt, through meditation, to listen to ‘me’ and – I have to say – I’m feeling the benefits of this new ‘slower’ life.

I appreciate the little things even more now.

Like really appreciate themBecause I now make the time to appreciate the marvel they are.

I even appreciate mundane things. For they’re all part of my reality.

I remember a psychologist telling me, ‘Helen, you have to get to the stage where you’ll enjoy washing up’. Busy Helen was all like, “Yeah….right….” (that’s just never gonna happen). And guess what? Slowed-down Helen now relishes the washing up with gusto, enjoying the simple act of going through the motions (three times a day, seven days a week).

Busy me would have said, “Oh my goodness, 21 times I stand at the sink and wash pots, I could be doing so many other things with this twenty minutes (my mind racing, galloping, somehow trying to do my to-do list in my mind, over and over). Slowed-down Helen uses those twenty minutes (which it’s not possible to avoid, after all; the pots pretty much have to be washed) to think, in silence, to just be. To give thanks for the little, but really not so little, wonders of the day.

To rejoice in the good bits of the day and to let go of the not-so-good bits of the day (for there’s always several not-so-good bits).

I like slowed-down me and I’m liking slow. 

I’m getting so much more out of life by living slow.

Anything that causes me to take longer than expected to do something, I welcome. With open arms.

Huge queue in the bank? I spy an opportunity to do some quiet reflection. Traffic jam? It’ll give me some extra reading time. Someone hasn’t arrived for the appointment I had with them? I don’t fret. I don’t curse their rudeness. I roll with it. Take the time to imagine or dream or meditate.

It is, I’ve realised, something that my body/mind combo decided for me, as it’s something I desperately needed. Stress is bad for your body, bad for your mind. Just really bad all round. When your body starts telling you you’re stressed, you’ve got to listen. When your mind can’t switch off and you’re awake at 3am more nights than you’re asleep at 3am, you’ve got to listen because something’s not right somewhere. 

We only have one body, only have one life.

Is your busy worth the toll it takes on your body and mind?


A resounding no.

So now, once I’d gone on the whole journey that led me to realising this, it suddenly became apparent that slow is, actually, the central axis of my new self-care regime.

I’m going slow because I love myself and want to give myself the best chance possible to a) stay around longer and b) enjoy everything the world has to offer whilst I’m still here and able to enjoy it.

Slow. It’s my new busy.

It’s the key to my new ‘me’.

Slow Helen.

I’m loving her.

Loving the new perspective on life I’m forging just by living slow. 


27 thoughts on “Slow is my new busy

  1. blondeusk says:

    I would love to slow down! I only do ‘manic’ and ‘hyper’ speeds. Thx – good post 🙂


  2. I’m so feeling this post – completely and wholeheartedly! And speaking of washing up and general chores; I’ve not seen them as too much of a pain, ever, only because when you really think about it and know what you’re doing… it’s actually pretty great. Doing the laundry will make my clothes clean, so at the end of the day I’ll enjoy doing it because I like clean clothes. And I like music. So I’ll play music, do the laundry, and just be in the moment and happy about it. I so agree with you on taking your time with things, appreciating what they are, and be all there. 🙂


  3. Sian says:

    There’s definitely an art to going slow. I think that’s why I love those few days after Christmas so much. I say it’s an excuse to do nothing and the kids tell me I shouldn’t need an excuse to do nothing.


    • iwillbloom says:

      Yes, it is sort of an art, isn’t it? You know I absolutely love those ‘in between’ days too….and how right they are. We shouldn’t need an excuse to do nothing….it’s IMPORTANT, actually, to do nothing!


  4. Lizelle says:

    Glad you’re finding these little hidden moments of joy, they’re like hems. I used to hate washing dishes too and still mostly do but when I started uni and my thoughts were not giving me a moments peace standing still and mindlessly doing something routine really really calmed me and helped me step off the highway of need to just gotta gotta gotta. Stress is a killer. Those awake nights get me too…


  5. alexa says:

    What a perfectly splendid title for your post – I’d like to write this up on the noticeboard above my desk, Helen! Do you know about the Slow Movement?


    • iwillbloom says:

      Hia! Write away! No, I didn’t know about that movement. Off to have a look! (Thank you for the heads up!)…I was reading about tiny houses the other day and that really piqued my interest….a huge plot of land with a tiny house…being outside most of the day and slinking back to our tiny, cosy, home as dusk falls. Heaven.


  6. There is a mantra from the profession that shaped who I am –

    Slow is smooth, and smooth is fast.

    The Hollywood view of things like room clearing is a welter of action, with black-hooded figures running hither and yon in a frenzy of light and noise. And if you’re in the room when the breacher does his work and the door comes explosively flying in, it does seem that way.

    But from the other side, it’s quite deliberate. The stack quietly dissolves into the area,members moving to the corners to cover the entry of those behind them, and to neutralize threats. You don’t run, because tripping not only makes you ineffective, but it looks kind of stupid.


  7. Eva says:

    Helen, that’s fantastic! I have been trying to be mindful in all my actions (cleaning especially) off and on for YEARS and I’m never able to stick to it. You’ve given me hope that it actually IS possible and you don’t have to live in a monastery where everyone has taken a vow of silence to do it, haha!


    • iwillbloom says:

      Eva….I seem to have reached some sort of inner peace (which felt really weird when I got there…I was all like “Oh my, something feels weird…what feels weird….oh, I feel OK. I feel happy. I don’t feel anxious…..I feel happy….yay…..I need to do everything I can to stay like this”)….it was a long, long, process, I tell you. But I honestly feel so peaceful, so so peaceful.


  8. Liz says:

    Oh, I love this! I want to share this in my “favorites” this week. I may even print this. I need to remember this. We are working on some changes for our family that will hopefully allow me to enjoy slowing down a bit too. Perfect read for me today xoxo


  9. Barbara says:

    What a “LOVELY” post, Helen! I soooooo understand the slowing down – and it isn’t easy to do, is it?! I was always busy busy busy when I was working FULL TIME – then I got sick, was “let go” and worked a temporary job for a while; then the seasonal tax preparation job – which I continue to do, but decided to SLOW DOWN and be available to our youngest daughter (especially, but actually BOTH daughters). I still am busy, but not as much; and I CAN slow down and enjoy life now – RETIRED and LOVING IT!!!

    Thanks for sharing – as I have said before…I love reading your heart!


    • iwillbloom says:

      Barbara…there was a lot of heart in this one. it was pretty much all heart actually 😉 Once you have mastered the art of slowing down, I can’t see what on Earth would make you want to rush ever again….


  10. Bravo to you dear Friend! I think we could all learn a lot from this…and if nothing else appreciate the reminder to slow down and be present instead of letting life run you over or pass you by. xo


  11. Ugh. Life gets so fast paced! So much so that I don’t WANT to slow down because if I do I might fall asleep. lol


  12. Zoe Rose says:

    Yes, yes yes! Although I do still hate washing up, I’m very grateful that we got a dishwasher!! This is a post about busy that you may also find interesting- I read it just before yours!


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