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Slow Down for Mindful Living

In the fast paced city life we live in today’s modern society slowing down is often not an easy task! It is so important that we learn how to slow down and be mindful, even when we are rushing around – shopping, sitting in traffic or working at the office etc. It is vital that throughout the day we take a moment to simply slow down, think, walk and breathe finding peace and tranquillity in the present moment.

21st century living in big cities is becoming increasingly more stressful with the belief that “speed wins” gaining popularity with the increasing number of shopping malls, fast food chains, public transport and technology are becoming an irreplaceable part of people’s lives. In comparison there are a decreasing number of parks/green spaces, increased traffic/pollution and higher consumption habits.

Living In such a fast paced and hectic environment is affecting people’s level of awareness. Even if we have the perfect life with good friends/family who love us and a great job – we often don’t get a chance to enjoy and appreciate what we have as we are constantly busy rushing around and striving for more.

Individuals we are becoming incredibly lonely, anxious and many are suffering from depression because of the stressful lives we live in such a chaotic environment.  We need to learn how to slow down and in doing so develop techniques such as mindfulness and meditation to help us.

When we learn how to slow down only then can we can enjoy our walk to work, the music in our ears, the food we eat, the people that we talk to and the day to day activities we do.

What is the meaning of mindful living? Mindful living is a deep philosophy emphasizing the importance of being in the moment without thinking about the past or worrying about the future. It is a skill of being aware of what is happening inside and around you at that present moment. Mindful living is being aware of the flow of life rather than constantly being in auto-pilot mode.

Well, how can we slow down while life forces us to speed up? The most important point is that there is not only one right way to slow down for everyone. The main purpose of mindful living is completely giving ourselves to whatever we experience at that present moment.

So when we slowdown in our daily life we are kindly inviting our mind to be in the present moment – Thoughts come and go, this is the nature of our mind. It is natural that our minds will wonder but we need to continuously acknowledge this and bring our minds back to the present moment.

We know that if we don’t like our experiences, the problem is our expectations. We need to focus on enjoying the natural flow of life without trying to change the reality.

Everyday Tips for Mindful Living
Walk slowly and observe the people around us, feel the sun, rain, music and even the ground we are walking on.
Eat slowly – experience all the tastes, flavours and smells, think about how your food was made and the journey it made from the plants to your plate.
Take a break during the day from responsibilities and technology.
Be aware of the importance of the question “how do i feel today really?”
Enjoy nature – inhale fresh air and appreciate all the beautiful colours e.g. the sky, clouds, sea, trees and mountains.
Try not to do too much at once and focus on what you are doing at the present moment. Remember that we are not robots, we are human!
Bring our awareness to our breathe within the day. When we experience stress, we come back to our breathe and feel our body.
Gratitude – We appreciate everything that we experience during the day from drinking a cup of water to seeing a smile on a child’s face.

Always keep in mind that slowing down and living in the present moment is the incredible existence of human beings.

Guliz Altinbasak