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HOW TO SLOW DOWN AND ENJOY LIFE

How would we live our lives if we intentionally lived with more ease and joy?

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by Emily Atkinson in SELF DISCOVERY
May 14, 2014 0 comments

Recently I stumbled across a yoga class called Ocean Stretch. The class was simple and focused on the basics – the breath, inhale, exhale, downward dog, knees, chest, chin.

Something unexpected happened, I enjoyed the simplicity of the class. Slowing down created the space for me to practice with ease and joy. I felt more grounded and connected than I had in a yoga class in a long time.

I realized it’s not about pushing and doing advanced poses, but slowing down and bringing ease and joy into the practice. And into life. I was humbled.

Often we hurry to get to the next moment without slowing down and enjoying the present.

Technology was invented to make life easier, yet it’s done the opposite; it’s taken the ease and joy out of simply living.

We socialize with our “friends” on Facebook. We zone out streaming Netflix for countless hours. iPads and PlayStations have replaced neighborhood outdoor games like capture the flag. Our iPhones have become our third arm and Google does our thinking for us.

What would be possible if the lesson I learned in the simple yoga class was applied to our lives?

How would we live our lives if we intentionally lived with more ease and joy?

What would shift if we eliminated technology and returned to the basics?

Knees, chest, chin…

I say we give it a try. Here are some ideas…

Turn off the phone: You’re probably thinking, “yeah right!” But seriously give it a try. Most of us have smart phones and we check email, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram several times a day. Disconnect from the world so you can reconnect with yourself.

Boycott the to do list:  I think this is a huge one when it comes to living with more ease. I am someone who used to let my to do list dictate my life. I now limit the number of items on my personal to do list to three a day (at the most) and I never look at it on the weekends with the exception of planning my week on Sundays.

Enjoy the moment : Each moment is unique and can never be duplicated. It will never again be May 14th, 2014 at 12:21pm with a slight breeze and an Indian summer. We are often in such a hurry to arrive at the next moment that we never enjoy the one we are living. Your senses are a great tool to bring you to the present moment. Listen, feel, gaze, taste and smell those beautiful roses.

Go {backyard} camping: When I think about going back to the basics camping is at the forefront of my mind. Wilderness, tents, story telling, stargazing and no electronics. Go camping for the weekend, or camp in your own backyard. Invite some friends over, make s’mores, pitch a few tents, turn off your electronics and have camp out. Live simply.

Play : Unleash your inner child. Play board games, capture the flag, hide-in-go-seek, or go on a scavenger hunt. There’s a reason these games brought us joy as children, they were fun and still are!

Watch the sunrise : When was the last time you watched the sunrise? Without snapping a picture and instantly uploading it to Instagram. What better way to start the day that to sit with ease and watch the sun slowly creep over the horizon.

These are just a few ideas and there are many more. What’s one step you can take today to live with more ease and joy? Do you have other ideas to add to the list? Like always, I love to hear from you. Please share in the comments below.

XO, emily

 

EMBARK ON A JOURNEY OF SELF-DISCOVERY

FREE WORKBOOK

HOOK ME UP!