Slow Down and Enjoy 480

slow down to enjoy life more

What’s with the rush? Why are we always in a hurry to go somewhere and do something?

We live fast. Even if we don’t do much, we manage to be busy setting goals, adding new unnecessary items to our to-do lists, aiming higher, engaging in different activities and working all the time.

We end up having no time at all. And when we do, we don’t even know how to use it properly because we’ve forgotten what it is to just stop, breathe and enjoy.

The problem

There is always something to be done, someone to meet, an event to join, things to read and write and so on. We rush from one thing to another without taking a breath, without even thinking about it. The autopilot is on and the only emotions we remember lately are stress (from all the haste), anxiety (for the things left undone), disappointment (when something is done wrong or there is no time for it).

Here is how Benjamin Hoff describes it in his spectacular book “The Tao of Pooh”.

He refers to people who are always doing something as Busy Backson because throughout the book he uses simple examples to explain the principles of Taoism.
Below you can see how he described perfectly today’s average person.

The Bisy Backson is always going somewhere,
somewhere he hasn’t been. Anywhere but where he is.
The Bisy Backson is almost desperately active.

He works when he works, works when he exercises,
 and, more often than not, works when he plays.
 Work, work, work. All work and no play makes Backson a dull
boy. Kept up for long enough, it makes him dead, too.
He doesn’t go out for a walk, though; he doesn’t have time.

 The Bisy Backson has practically no time at all,
because he’s too busy wasting it by trying
to save it. And by trying to save every bit of it,
he ends up wasting the whole thing.

Of course, real progress involves growing and developing,
which involves changing inside, but that’s
something the inflexible Backson is unwilling to do.
The urge to grow and develop, present in all forms
of life, becomes perverted in the Bisy Backson’s
mind into a constant struggle to change everything
(the Bulldozer Backson) and everyone (the Bigoted
Backson) else but himself, and interfere with things
he has no business interfering with, including practically
every form of life on earth. 

The solution

Instead, we need to slow down. To eliminate the unnecessary from our life – the stress and worries, the tasks and activities that only waste our time. To learn how find simplicity in daily life and be mindful of what we’re doing at this moment.
Only this can help us enjoy life no matter what and thus make us happy and contented with it.

Taoism offers a simple yet powerful solution (again By B. Hoff):

Tao doesn’t force or interfere
with things, but lets them work in their own way,
to produce results naturally. Then whatever needs
to be done is done.

That doesn’t mean that the goals we have
don’t count. They do, mostly because they cause us
to go through the process, and it’s the process that
makes us wise, happy, or whatever. If we do things
in the wrong sort of way, it makes us miserable,
angry, confused, and things like that. The goal has
to be right for us, and it has to be beneficial, in
order to ensure a beneficial process. But aside from
that, it’s really the process that’s important. Enjoyment
of the process is the secret that erases the
myths of the Great Reward and Saving Time. Perhaps
this can help to explain the everyday significance
of the word Tao, the Way. 

What could we call that moment before we
begin to eat the honey? Some would call it anticipation,
but we think it’s more than that. We would
call it awareness. It’s when we become happy and
realize it, if only for an instant. By Enjoying the
Process, we can stretch that awareness out so that
it’s no longer only a moment, but covers the whole
thing. Then we can have a lot of fun. Just like Pooh.

So instead of rushing into the new day, we should embrace it slowly, with a smile and anticipation. Because time is on our side. We control it. And by enjoying the present moment we use it wisely. By being mindful of what we do, we do it better and find more pleasure.

Even the toughest task can become a moment of joy if we do it with the right attitude. Sometimes we need to accept things as they are, not try to change them. This will give us the peace and harmony we’re looking for and therefore will be contented.

Another thing that always helps is gratefulness. Being happy with what you have now, appreciation and realizing how more than enough it is, is one of the secrets to happiness and success.
Gratitude is so easy and yet so rare. If we all start being thankful and focus on what we have rather than what else we need, the less will become more, all the empty spaces will be filled and everything will be in place.

Get The Lifestyle Designer's Digest

Sharing my adventures in lifestyle design, building an online business, and growing this blog. Join me for weekly updates.

Previous ArticleNext Article

5 Smart Ways to Incorporate Technology into Your Home 18

5 Smart Ways to Incorporate Technology into Your Home

A smart home was something we could only see in sci-fi movies just a few years ago. Today, smart technology is becoming more available in terms of prices and offers. Therefore, it’s not so surprising that many homeowners are choosing to introduce technology into their homes and make their lives more convenient, safe, cost-efficient and fun.

In fact, a recent report predicted that a global smart home platform revenue will increase from $4.2 billion (2017) to $39.5 billion (2026).

There is no doubt that the concept of a smart home will revolutionize our interaction with our interior, and impact various other aspects, such as the potential resale value of our properties. Knowing all this, it seems wise to start thinking about the ways to incorporate new technology into your home, today. Here are our top five.

Be smart – save energy

If there are two trends that have marked the previous year when it comes to home design, those are energy-efficiency and new technologies.

So, why not combine them and make smart technology work for you and help you save money on your electricity and heating bills? Your first step towards doing that is installing smart lighting. This change will enable you to remotely manage all the light bulbs in your home by using an app, so you won’t have to wonder whether you left your lights on ever again. The best way to use this technology is to pair it with LED bulbs and thus maximize your savings.

Another popular upgrade that helps you save money and automate your home is a smart thermostat. This device connects to your home Wi-Fi and allows you to set the desired temperature no matter where you are. Some models can even remember your habits and adjust the temperature accordingly.

An important safety upgrade

The times we are living in may be new and exciting, but they are still dangerous. That’s why you should do everything you can to make sure that your household is protected both from the unwanted guest as well as various hazards.

Smart home security takes care of that by offering state-of-the-art locks, high-resolution cameras, smoke detectors and motion-triggered alarms. Compared to the traditional security systems, smart security systems will not only alert everybody with a loud alarm but can also send an alert to your phone in case of emergency.

Comfort and convenience with smart furniture

Smart furniture is not being discussed enough, and we’re here to change that. It is set to completely change the way we live our lives.

Let’s start with a smart table or side table. These pieces can feature LED lights, Bluetooth speakers and wireless phone chargers.

The innovative smart sofas offer similar perks but with more coziness. Besides LED lights and speakers, they provide you with a convenient place to charge your phone, allowing you to have everything you need at your fingertips.

Other innovative pieces include color-changing wardrobes and TVs that can be “masked” into artwork, when turned off.

Make everything work together – smart hubs

You might find it difficult to control all your smart gadgets individually. A smart hub allows you to create a centralized system where all your devices are connected to the cloud, and you don’t need more than one app to manage all of them.

Additionally, smart hubs enable you to automate your devices. For example, this would mean that as soon as you unlock the door (using a smart lock, of course), the light in your entryway will be turned on and the thermostat will set the optimal temperature.

The only problem with smart hubs is that this new technology is still in its infancy, and there are too many manufacturers who do not collaborate. This makes pairing up devices from different manufacturers into one hub impossible. Until that changes, to avoid any problems, you should buy the products from the same brand.

A helping hand voice

If you are among those people who remember the Halloween special episode of the Simpsons on the mention of a smart home assistant, don’t be afraid. The assistants of the real world are nothing like Ultrahouse 3000 voiced by Pierce Brosnan. In fact, this technology can make your life a lot easier by helping you make the home automation run smoothly.

Just like Cortana and Siri are improving the smartphone user experience, smart home assistants will make your life easier.

They can be set to react to voice commands, which allows you to control various smart home features without having to use any app. Also, if you have a camera above your entrance and a smart lock, your assistant can unlock the door when they recognize your face.

It’s an exciting time to be alive, and we are sure that there are plenty other surprising smart home innovations on the horizon. Until then, try out these five, and see for yourself how they can change your life.

About The Author

Emma is a writer and a home décor enthusiast. She believes that good design can be found at the intersection between beautiful and functional. Her inspiration comes from traveling and exposing herself to new experiences.

Let's incorporate technology into our homes. Here are 5 smart home security and automation hacks to get started: