We are hurtling towards Christmas at an astonishing rate which means a new year is upon us, which means I will soon be turning 40. Well, July actually, but somewhere in your late 30s you enter warp speed and it doesn’t matter what you do it just seems impossible to slow it down, believe me I’ve tried. Well I’ve come to the conclusion that maybe I can’t slow down time but I can slow down my life.
I’ve always been a bit of an eye roller when the words ‘mindful’ and ‘slow living’ are uttered or printed anywhere, but I bought a new mag the other day called Moment, just because I needed a break from all those perfect home mags and designer labels. I had been working stupidly long hours with my two businesses and had a stinking cold. My house was a complete mess and the children had decorated the tree (say no more). So the last thing I needed to see was how Mrs Smith an interior designer and Mr Smith a wanker, sorry did I say wanker? I meant banker, with their children Bloom aged 9 and Venus aged 3, and Binky the bloody pony celebrate CHRISTMAS.
Anyway, so back to the mag. I sniffed my way through articles on Yin Yoga, staying calm and coping with social anxieties. And I have to say I could relate to so many of those women, strong lovely people that had just reached exhaustion and really did need to just slow it down and think.
I’ve always said it isn’t easy to have a calm life when you’re juggling all of the things that life seems to fling at you, but actually that’s not true. I’m about to let you in on a secret about me, I’m a recluse. I honestly couldn’t be more introvert if I tried. And because I know this about myself I’ve always made an effort to push myself out of my comfort zone. Being sociable, going to that social media do, throwing that workshop when all I wanted to do was curl up and hide until it’s all over. I thought I was being good to myself by pushing myself out there and conquering my fears, after all, that is what we’re told to do. I’ve only just realised how stupid I’ve been to make myself completely and utterly stressed out by putting myself in these situations. It’s me that’s done it, no one else has forced me. But I now get it.
It’s ok to be the way I am. I am an introvert. I’m a shy creative person who likes my own company. I’m not lonely and I do have a life. With a fabulous family and amazing friends. I don’t need to prove anything to myself anymore so I’m going to finally use that word ‘mindful’ and be mindful.
I’m going to listen to my inner voice and trust it, if it’s running screaming for the hills I’m going to follow it to the countryside and enjoy the little things. I shall not be dragging it back kicking and screaming to attend a product launch. I shall listen to my body and be kind to myself. Starting with what I eat. Giving myself more time to think about the meals I prepare. Don’t get me wrong I won’t be a saint, heavens I still need wine. But I am already mindful (there it is again) about the fuel my body needs to stay fit and energised.
Ive also started yin yoga which I flipping love! It’s a cross between meditation and yoga and focuses on your joints. And now I’ve stopped saying yes to everything I’m enjoying long walks again with my dog, something I’d been struggling to find time for as I was so busy making myself do other stuff.
I can’t tell you how excited I am now about a new year. One where I’m not making any silly resolutions or forcing myself to do or be. But just to be me. To grow my flowers for my lovely customers and paint my watercolours for my Etsy store. I’m staying in my comfort zone because it’s lovely there and there’s always a nice cup of tea and a comfy seat in the garden.
I guess what I’m trying to say is it’s ok to be you! You don’t have to prove anything to anyone. Treat yourself, take back time.
I wish you all a calm and beautiful Christmas whatever you are doing.