How to slow down and reconnect

by | Nov 30, 2021 | Discover Your Happy

It’s November 30th and it has been well over a year since I have written a post and even longer than that since I wrote something meaningful. Insanely grateful for our buddy Mike who has kept things rolling over here. I don’t know that I have an excuse or need one for that matter. I think it’s just been a season of life that required me going inward before sharing anything outward. It required a lot of plans to be put on hold and a lot of pressing pause on projects and dreams. With much clearer vision and a better sense purpose, passion, and self, I’m pretty excited to start slowly moving forward again. Slowly being the key word. That was my one of my biggest takeaways from this period of life. I need to slow the f down. We all do.

We move through life like the goal is to always be getting somewhere or through something. Death? Is that what we’re rushing towards?? Because literally that’s the only thing at the end. While we’re still lucky enough to be breathing there will always be a to do list, there will always be projects, and calls to make and cleaning to do and people to care for. None of it is ever done. There is rarely the “other side”. There is just whatever is next. Sometimes it’s good, sometimes it’s bad, most often is a mix of both. When we’re rushing through everything, we’re taking in nothing. And we aren’t here for nothing. We’re here to play and love and grieve and experience and feel and connect.

So as a recovering busybody, here are few ways I’ve found to slow it down and reconnect:

  • Wander without agenda or destination. I’d say it’s most effective if you can do this in some sort of natural setting but even a sidewalk works. Just starting walking. Turn when you feel like turning. Rest when you want to rest and move back towards home when it feels right. Focus on each step, each breath, and everything around you. Check in with what you see, smell, and hear. Don’t think about what you have to do next or what happened earlier that day, only what your body is sensing in those moments.
  • Stare at a tree. Hug a tree. Hell, kiss it! Find a tree that calls to you or that you’re drawn to and literally just be there with it. Look at the grooves, touch the leaves, give it a name. See if you can feel the roots under your feet and let yourself sink into them. When you touch it, see if you can feel an energy like heat or a slight vibration. I promise nothing will bring you in the moment more than connecting with something that doesn’t seem particularly lively but is more alive than any of us ever will be.
  • Stop multitasking for a day. For just 24 hours commit to doing only one thing at a time, and being in the moment with that thing. Even if it’s doing the dishes. Just do that. Not talking on the phone, not thinking through your shopping list, just focusing on the warm water and soapy bubbles and the beautiful glassware you just used at dinner.
  • Get some fresh air first thing in the morning. I don’t care how cold it is, stand outside for a few moments. Crack the window, breath in the outdoor air. I live in Michigan. It’s cold this time of year, and I’m always cold in general but for the last few weeks each morning when I let the dogs out, I leave the door wide open for about 5 minutes. I stand there breathing for a few and then just allow the fresh air to come into my home. It’s pleasant reminder that I’m awake, I’m alive, I’m breathing, I’m feeling, and I’m grateful to start a new day.

Maybe these things don’t resonate with you, but it’s worth taking time to figure out what does. Finding simple ways to slow down and be present doesn’t just affect you. It affects how you show up in the world and with others and we could all use some movement in a positive direction right now.

Alison Glowinski

Alison Glowinski

Alison is a co-founder of Happy People Hike, THE Head Happy Hiker, usually lost, and always hungry.

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