At the center of slow living are time and the effort to control it. To somehow create more time. Yet slowing down ourselves does not change the passing of time, just our perception of it. We stop and notice little things and do things we haven’t done before and days seem longer. We rush and run, and do, and jump to the next and the days fly.
I don’t have time. But how are you spending your time? Here are 31 ideas to defy time and do things a bit differently this winter.
Here we, go, 31 slow living practices for early winter:
- Walk on top of fallen colorful leaves and listen to the sounds they make. Notice and describe below at least three sounds of those late-autumn leaves
- In the morning, first thing after you wake up, open your window and breathe in. What does winter smell like where you live?
- Cocoon yourself on the sofa with a blanket and think of pleasant things for 5 minutes. Taking a nap is ok
- Bake a loaf of bread. Enjoy the texture of the dough, the smell of the bread in the oven, then when it’s done, break a piece with your fingers and eat it with butter or olive oil and a bit of salt (here’s my easy bread recipe)
- Take a shower and imagine yourself in an outdoor shower, on a deserted, tropical island
- Eat your favorite winter fruit as slowly as you can
- Try a week of no spending
- Meditate for 5 minutes. Use an app or search YouTube for guided exercises. I like Headspace.
- Sprout seeds for making a fresh salad. You can use mung beans, soybeans, lentils, whatever you have.
- Enjoy the growth of your tiny plants
- Sit on a bench in the park and listen to the sounds of the place
- Plant tulip bulbs to enjoy during spring
- Schedule an evening for “doing nothing”. Don’t plan to be productive, plan to intentionally “waste time”
- Try knitting. If you’re very experienced try knitting slower and enjoying your yarn and needles (here’s an easy knitting pattern for making a cozy hat)
- Frog something you won’t wear
- Darn a pair of socks or some other piece of clothing in need of some love. It doesn’t need to be invisible
- Sew fabric napkins for yourself (here are some napkins I made and then died with blueberries)
- Sit somewhere quiet and draw your favorite animal for a few minutes. Close your eyes, remember it, draw it. (Here’s what happened when I sat down to draw for a few minutes, for a month)
- Try a tiny embroidery on a piece of clothing. Use the smallest needle and the thinnest threads you own and embroider something on an invisible-to-others spot (Some inspiration)
- Choose a special kind of fabric from your stash, hold it in your hands, drape it over your body, over objects and imagine what it could become. Don’t take any decisions
- Mindfully and slowly clean and object you are thinking to replace. Make it as good as new
- Fix some annoying thing in your home: a sound, a leak, a closure, a door
- Cook a beautiful meal, like a colorful salad or sushi
- Write a mind map with everything that’s on your mind. Don’t overthink, just connect thoughts as they arise
- Work without your computer for 15 minutes
- Walk to work or from work one day and do your best not to rush
- Make yourself a cup of tea and imagine your own kind of tea ceremony
- Make someone a kindness
- Look out the window. Keep your phone in your pocket
- Pick up a book that excites you and silently read one page
- Take one weekly activity you do in a hurry and try to do it slowly, unrushed