Monday, January 08, 2007

Slowing Down

Live as if you were to die tomorrow, learn as if you were to live forever.
Mahatma Gandhi

As a society we always seem to be in such a mad rush. We rush from one place to another to get the best sales. We rush in order to make enough money so that we can live in a large house or buy the stuff we think we need. We eat quickly, we cook quickly (if at all), we purchase clothing which was quickly manufactured, we purchase furniture and cabinets that we only need a screwdriver to put together (if even that). The commercials we see are fast paced and the music we listen to is fast. All of our senses seem to be inundated with this pace. No wonder so many of us are miserable.

This last week, Liz at Groovy Green posted an article about The Hidden Cost of Cashmere. The explosion of cheap cashmere sweaters at big box stores has had huge impacts on the environment. The goats which are used to create cashmere are now creating desertification. When we demand so much stuff at a cheap price there are multiple larger costs.

The new year always bring moments of reflection and new resolutions.

I hate to make a resolution this year. This last year brought so many changes and new awareness to my life. I don't know what the next year will bring. I hope to continue on my journey toward a sustainable lifestyle. I hope to continue writing about my journey and sharing ideas and inspiration.

One of the major things I want to do this year is slow down. I am currently knitting my first sweater. I realized that as I knit I am likely to take better care of this sweater. I will not be able to quickly or easily replace it. As I think about this, I realize how many other things I can do to slow down which make me appreciate what I have even more. Creating the edible garden is one of those journeys that are slow. The process in creating is important and can be appreciated. Slowing down will also help me reduce my environmental impact.

Is there any way that you can slow down?

Let me amend to state that I am not exclaiming that we should all make all of our clothes or that we shouldn't work and just stay at home and knit. Just that I think we appreciate them more when they are handmade (by us or others). I also am aware that many of us need to work and don't make much money. However, we can choose what to purchase and to make more prudent choices in our purchases. I would rather buy or make one handmade sweater and wear that every week than purchase 10 of lesser quality and know that my excess is creating damage. Just my own thoughts ... :)


Oh, I just started a yahoo group (Sustainable Urban Living - see hte link on the right). You are free to join. :)

14 comments:

Kim in IN said...

I've got to think about this Emme. I don't feel like I'm rushing to and fro,even with 3 children still at home and 2 adult daughters with 4 children between them. I think along the way I've been learning to slow down.....to savor life in small bites. Gosh I wish I would have known some of these things at 26....I'll be 46 soon.
peace,
kim

Sally Parrott Ashbrook said...

Unfortunately, in the US today, many families I see have a hectic pace literally in the process of making ends meet. Working a $7/hr. job means that you work overtime or suffer. Then everything else in your life gets crunched together in your remaining time.

But for those of us in middle America, there certainly is an issue of whether we are rushing simply because we have become accustomed to rushing. I worry about my friends who don't know how to turn off. One of my closest friends literally can't function without tv, internet, and her cell phone; she goes nuts without them. (She also lives in NYC.) She's had an ulcer before the age of 30. (She also does many wonderful things with her life and will probably be 'important' by many standards, but I do worry.)

One of the biggest ways I find to slow down is to make a meal mostly or entirely from scratch. As long as I start with a clean kitchen, and I set my ingredients and utensils out within my reach, I don't feel rushed or frustrated. I relax into making the food.

Sometimes I think about the limitations my and Dan's children will have . . . for example, on the number of extra-curricular activities they do. I tried to do too much as a kid, and I got to college burnt-out on achievement. I want my kids to learn to do several things with intense focus instead of doing everything (whether they manage to do everything sloppily or perfectly).

RAS said...

Thanks for creating the group, Emme. I just joined. I'll try to post some thoughts on slowing down later, but right now I'm 'slowing down' by going back to bed -I have bronchitis.

Laurie said...

tonight my husband and I ate a real, home cooked meal at our dining room table for the first time in months. No tv, no movies, just the two of us talking and taking the time to be together and enjoy our meal. It was the best 30 minutes we have had in awhile. Our normal dinner is at the kitchen counter, watching tv or a movie and eating our 80% processed food in 15 minutes. It was nice to slow down for a change. And it was funny to read these same thoughts tonight on your blog!

BurdockBoy said...

By trying to belly breathe more often I have found it helps me slow down and take in the moment. Even when I am doing something like shopping, breathing deeply helps me think clearly and rationally.

hannah said...

One of the ways I am slowing down is turning off the TV. This is leaving me more time to clean and declutter so I am more organized and less stressed. I cook more, use less electricity and am not so overstimulated. There are some shows I still like to watch but they are few. That is very eye-opening about cashmere, I will have to pass that information on.

Anonymous said...

fat loss 4 idiots -
final sync -
final uninstaller -
firewall gold -
fitness model program -
fit yummy yummy -
flatten your abs -
forex auto money -
forex auto pilot -
forex confidante -
game tester guide -
governmentregistry -
government registry -
healthy urban kitchen -
higher faster sports -
homebrew installer -
homemadeenergy -
home made energy -
i am big brother -
instant profit machine -
i want a teaching job -
joyful tomato -
lose man boobs -
lower body make over -
macro virus -
magic of making up -
make money taking surveys -
malware bot -
maternityacupressure -
maternity acupressure -
meet your sweet -
moles warts removal -
money siphon system -
muscle gaining secrets -

Anonymous said...

my airfare secrets -
my miracle loans -
my out of control teen -
natural cancer treatments -
ovarian cyst cures -
pc optimizer pro -
piano for all -
prevent sweating -
privacy control -
publicrecordspro -
public records pro -
pvp bible -
quick article pro -
quit smoking today -
reg defense -
reg genie -
registry easy -
registry genius -
registry smart -
registry winner -
registry winner download -
reg tool -
relationship headquarters -
reverse mobile -
richard mackenzie direct -
rocket japanese -
rotator cuff training -
satellite tv pc master -
secrets book -
spy no more -
spyware cease -
survey scout -
the bad breath report -
thedietsolutionprogram -

Anonymous said...

the diet solution program -
the guru assassin -
the power pause -
tmj help -
tonsil stones remedies -
turbulence training -
two minute profits -
vincedelmontefitness -
vince del monte fitness -
warp speed fat loss -
web traffic machines -
wedding speech 4u -
wind plans -
xp repair pro -
your fun business -
zygor guides -
500 love making tips -
acid alkaline diet -
acne no more -
advanced defrag -
anti spyware bot -
art of approaching -
banish tinnitus -
beat eczema -
blood pressure normalized -
burnthefat -
burn the fat -
conversationalhypnosis -
conversational hypnosis -
cpa arbitrage -
creative date ideas -
debt free in three -
digital background -
dirty talking guide -

Anonymous said...

discus fish secrets -
duplicate file cleaner -
dw insider -
earth4energy -
earth 4 energy -
easy tv soft -
easy web video -
eatstopeat -
eat stop eat -
end your tinnitus -
error doctor -
evidence smart -
fap winner -
fat burning furnace -
fat loss 4 idiots -
final sync -
final uninstaller -
firewall gold -
fitness model program -
fit over 40 -
fit yummy yummy -
flatten your abs -
forex auto pilot -
gain opinion -
gold secrets -
government records -
governmentregistry -
government registry -
green diy energy -
healthy urban kitchen -
highest pay surveys -
holo think -
homemadeenergy -
home made energy -

Anonymous said...

i want a teaching job -
joyful tomato -
keyword elite -
learn photoshop videos -
lmt forex formula -
lower body make over -
macro virus -
malware bot -
maternityacupressure -
maternity acupressure -
meet your sweet -
microcap millionaires -
moles warts removal -
money siphon system -
muscle gaining secrets -
my list strategy -
my phone riches -
natural cancer treatments -
online tv pc -
panic away -
pdf creator -
peel away ads -
pips leader -
ppc web spy -
prevent sweating -
privacy control -
publicrecordspro -
public records pro -
questions for couples -
quick article pro -
quick paid surveys -
quit smoking today -
reg defense -
registry winner -

Anonymous said...

reg tool -
reverse mobile -
richard mackenzie direct -
rocket german -
rotator cuff training -
rss feeds submit -
satellite pc box -
save the marriage -
spy no more -
spyware stop -
super seduction power -
surefire trading challenge -
tattoo me now -
the bad breath report -
thedietsolutionprogram -
the diet solution program -
the dog food conspiracy -
the mini site formula -
tmj help -
tonsil stones remedies -
truth about abs -
twitter trick -
vincedelmontefitness -
vince del monte fitness -
warp speed fat loss -
wedding speech 4u -
win clear -
xbox 360 red light fix -
xp repair pro -
500 love making tips -
acid alkaline diet -
advanced defrag -
alpha male system -
amazing cover letters -

Anonymous said...

reg tool -
reverse mobile -
richard mackenzie direct -
rocket german -
rotator cuff training -
rss feeds submit -
satellite pc box -
save the marriage -
spy no more -
spyware stop -
super seduction power -
surefire trading challenge -
tattoo me now -
the bad breath report -
thedietsolutionprogram -
the diet solution program -
the dog food conspiracy -
the mini site formula -
tmj help -
tonsil stones remedies -
truth about abs -
twitter trick -
vincedelmontefitness -
vince del monte fitness -
warp speed fat loss -
wedding speech 4u -
win clear -
xbox 360 red light fix -
xp repair pro -
500 love making tips -
acid alkaline diet -
advanced defrag -
alpha male system -
amazing cover letters -

Anonymous said...

anti spyware -
anti spyware bot -
article rewriter -
art of approaching -
auto cash system -
burnthefat -
burn the fat -
bv cures -
calling men -
camera dollars -
carb rotation diet -
cash making power sites -
cb mall -
combat the fat -
conversationalhypnosis -
conversational hypnosis -
credit secrets bible -
destroy hemorrhoids -
dirty talking guide -
dotcom income secrets -
duplicate file cleaner -
dvd copy pro -
earth4energy -
earth 4 energy -
easy launcher -
easy system cleaner -
eatstopeat -
eat stop eat -
eczema free forever -
end your tinnitus -
error nuker -
fatburningfurnace -
fat burning furnace -
fat loss 4 idiots -