I’m the sort of person who’s always doing something. I’m always busy, always rushing, always trying to fit as much as I can into my days. Everything needs to be done at 300 miles an hour and if things don’t go at that speed I feel as though I’m wasting valuable time. Obviously, this is not healthy. This is not relaxing. This is not a way to live your life.
But luckily, due to both a change in circumstances and my own attempts to live a happier life, I’ve started to slow things down. I’ve started to be less focused on how long things should take and allowed myself a little time to breathe. So, without further ado, here are a few of the changes I’ve made/accidentally made recently, to take myself out of the fast lane.
Taking a longer lunch
Because my bus now gets me to work super early, I’ve moved my start time forward by half an hour. Which means I get an hour lunch break. A whole hour. Which means I can do more than just eat my lunch on my lunch break. I can actually relax on my lunch break. I don’t have to get stressed about whether there’s enough time to go to the canteen on my lunch break. Omg wow.
Hey, look at me, writing blog posts on my lunch break. Hey, look at me, walking to the vending machine on my lunch break. Here, look at me, doing everything in the world on my lunch break. You get the picture!
Not rushing for the bus
This is more down to my workplace moving than anything else, but I’m finding this to be a really positive change. I’m now lucky enough to have half and hour to walk from work to the bus stop, which is much less stressful than my previously angry ten-minute speed-walk. It’s nice to be able to walk at a snail’s pace, buy myself an incredibly naughty McFlurry and not have to silently curse everyone who walks slowly in front me. Though there are probably people silently cursing me for walking so bloody slowly now.
Waiting for Andy for tea
So, up until recently, I used to make my tea as soon as I got home, because waiting until half 8 for Andy to get home seemed like an impossible and unfair task. This, of course, resulted in two times the cooking and two times the washing, as well as a mad race to get all the pots and pans washed for Andy’s arrival. I’ve since stopped this ridiculousness and instead have a snack when I get home, in order to stop my stomach’s desperate screams for attention. Also, Andy now finishes at 7, which means there’s less time for me to be a hangry monster anyway.
Doing things at own pace
For the past couple of years, I’ve made myself extra-long to-do lists, challenged myself to learn lots of new things and attempted to cram as much as I could into every given day. While it seemed like I was achieving something, this actually just ended up making me miserable, and turned fun things into a chore. Which is why, recently, I’ve scrapped the daily to-do list and just worked through tasks at my own pace. I don’t plan to tackle seventeen tasks in one day, but give myself a more realistic amount. So what if it takes me an extra day or two to get that novel plan done or comments returned? I’m enjoying it so much more and that’s what really matters!
Even though my circumstances may have changed, I didn’t have to slow things down. I could have asked to finish ten minutes earlier at work and ran to the previous bus. I could have attempted to make my tea and wash up in less than two hours, before Andy got home. I could have tasked myself with writing three blog posts a week like I did last Christmas. But I just didn’t want to. Life doesn’t have to be all-go all the time. You’re not going to miss out on anything important by taking an extra fifteen minutes to walk to the bus stop.
It’s been less than a month since I’ve made these changes, and I’m already feeling so much better about everything. I’m calmer, happier and I enjoy everything so much more. I’m so glad I didn’t try to force myself into another hurried routine. Life shouldn’t be like a Grand Theft Auto police chase all the time. Sometimes it’s nice to enjoy the scenery.
P.S. I’m planning to do a Q&A soon, so it would be really lovely if you could ask me a few questions in the comments below. Please and thank you!