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Fighting the Resistance

Resistance - via Slow Your Home

I’m very much a yoga novice. I take a class twice a week and practice most days, but I’m not much more than an enthusiastic beginner.

When I’m in a pose or a stretch I find difficult, my body does this weird thing where it resists the movement. It actively works against itself to stop me from going all the way into a stretch.

Recently I’ve learnt that breathing into it, letting go, releasing the resistance and relaxing helps. A pose I don’t think I can get into (mermaid, anyone?) often becomes easier when I mindfully choose to release the resistance and breathe into it.

(As an aside, that’s one of the things I’m loving so much about yoga – it’s such a mindful practice. No matter how preoccupied I am when I walk in to the class, my mind is clear of everything except yoga for those 60 minutes. I come away feeling mentally light.)

This weekend, as I was doing the washing up, trying to listen to music, hearing the kids squeal and play, thinking of all the stuff I had to do before going out later in the day, I could feel my shoulders get tense. I could feel the muscles of my back crawl up my spine as I continued to resist life.

I didn’t want it to be noisy, I didn’t want to be washing up, I didn’t want to go out that afternoon.

But I realised that resistance was coming from me, not from the circumstances I found myself in. I was resisting those not fun parts of my morning. I was resisting the things that needed to happen. I was resisting life. The everyday, mundane, not fun parts of life felt like something I wanted to fight against.

Of course, the reality is that I can’t. And I don’t really want to.

I don’t live in a vacuum, and there are things I need to do simply because I would be a jerk if I didn’t. There are parts of daily life that aren’t amazing, so it’s best I quit resisting and soften into it.

Standing at the kitchen sink, my shoulders climbing higher up my neck, I took three big deep breaths and told myself to quit fighting and enjoy the moment, in all its mundane normalness.

And while this sounds like typical bloggish hyperbole, the truth is that my shoulders dropped, the fuzzy feeling in my head disappeared and I felt peaceful. even amongst the everyday noise and chores and life stuff.

When it comes to mindfulness, I feel like I’m pretty much an enthusiastic beginner, much like my yoga practice. But I have learnt enough over the past few years of slowing down and simplifying to recognise the benefits of releasing this kind of resistance.

I feel happier, more content, more present, more at ease with wherever I am in life. I feel less stress, less anxiety, less strain, less distraction. Simply by not fighting the resistance.

(Which sounds like some kind of Star Wars reference. But, really, I’m not that clever.)

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I just wanted to say a huge thank you to everyone who listened to The Slow Home Podcast last week. The number of people who tuned in blew my mind (well over 20,000 people at last check) and the feedback I’ve received has been amazing, so thank you.

I also received a few emails asking about the blog now I’ve launched the podcast, and I wanted to reassure you I will still be writing blog posts here every Monday. I think much more clearly when I write, and I also know there are a lot of people who would prefer to read than listen, so the written posts aren’t going anywhere.

Every second Friday 6,000 people also receive my newsletter, which includes an exclusive post (for subscribers only) and a list of Five Things For Your Weekend – a collection of links, thoughts, challenges and other tidbits. If you want to receive the newsletter, you can sign up here.

So the good news is you can now get your Slow Home inspiration three ways:

Rhythm, Baby – SHP005

Rhythm, Baby - Episode 5 of The Slow Home Podcast

When it comes to routine versus rhythm, it’s rhythm all the way for me.

In today’s show (another solo outing to round out the big podcast launch week) I talk about the difference between rhythm and routine, and why it’s important to apply the friendlier notion of rhythm to our days.

Shifting into a rhythmic approach has been one of the best changes I’ve made to my life over the past few years and I feel like I actually get more done (most days) than if I was to apply a regimented routine to my days.

Later in the episode I also take a look at what my morning rhythm looks like at the moment, why my alarm is set for 4am and what I manage to get done before other members of my family wake up.

I hope you’ve enjoyed the first week of the show as much as I’ve loved bringing it to you! After today’s episode I will be releasing a new podcast every Thursday morning (Australian time) so be sure to subscribe to the show so you don’t miss out.

If you’ve been enjoying the show, I would be so grateful if you could take one minute to subscribe and leave a rating or a review in iTunes. Apparently this gets the show pushed up in the iTunes rankings and will help other people discover the podcast who otherwise may not. One of the biggest reasons I’ve created the podcast is to help share the ideas of slow living with a wider audience, so any help you could offer would be amazing.

With that in mind, grab a cup of something tasty and dive in to today’s episode.

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Head over to iTunes to subscribe to the show and play the episode.

Alternatively, you can listen to the show directly from the blog, simply by hitting the Play button above. Enjoy!

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What You’ll Hear About  in Today’s Episode:

  • The difference between rhythm and routine
  • Why I think rhythm is a better option, particularly when trying to create a slower, simpler life
  • Why I choose to get up at 4am
  • Why this approach may not work for everyone
  • What my mornings look like and how I have created a rhythm that helps me get a lot done before my family wakes up

Things to Check Out After Today’s Episode:

Keep Listening:

What is Slow Living, Anyway? SHP004

What is Slow Living Anyway? Episode 4 of The Slow Home Podcast

Episode 4 of massive launch week for The Slow Home Podcast, and this is the first of two solo shows. It’s just me, you, my mic and some thoughts on slow living.

In today’s episode I dig in to what I mean when I talk about slow living. That is, what do proponents of slow living actually do differently, what is important and what isn’t important. I also round out the show with a list of 9 massive benefits of slowing down and living a simpler life.

Grab a cup of something and enjoy. (And please let me know what you think of the solo show as opposed to the interviews. I’m learning about this whole podcasting thing in a very public way so any feedback you may have would be gratefully accepted.)

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Head over to iTunes to subscribe to the show and play the episode.

Alternatively, you can listen to the show directly from the blog, simply by hitting the Play button above. Enjoy!

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What You’ll Hear About  in Today’s Episode:

  • What I mean when I talk about ‘slow living’
  • Why I think anyone can benefit from slowing down, in spite of the fast-paced busy-ness we experience on a daily basis
  • The nine massive benefits I’ve experienced from creating a slower life:
    • Acceptance
    • Clarity
    • Clutter-Free
    • Gratitude
    • Health
    • Presence
    • Relationships
    • Generosity
    • Joy

Things to Check Out After Today’s Episode:

Keep Listening:

Rebecca Shann Talks Simplicity – SHP003

The Slow Home Podcast Episode 3 - Rebecca Shann

We’re halfway through our epic launch week, and in this episode I get the opportunity to chat with Rebecca Shann, a writer, photographer, gardener and permaculture designer.

Bec is someone I connected with via Instagram a couple of years ago, as I was immediately drawn to both the incredible photos of her vegetable garden as well as her philosophy on living a simpler life. I knew we would hit it off immediately, even though this was the first time she and I have ever actually spoken!

We talk about her journey from corporate, suburban life to living in a tiny home and running a thriving market garden, as well as the benefits of slowing down and paying attention.

Enjoy!

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Head over to iTunes to subscribe to the show and play the episode.

Alternatively, you can listen to the show directly from the blog, simply by hitting the Play button above.

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What You’ll Hear About in Today’s Episode:

  • The questions Bec asked herself before making the move from the suburbs to the country
  • What it is about simple living that appealed in the first place
  • The completely chilled out way Bec begins her days

Things to Check Out After Today’s Episode:

 Keep Listening:

Joel Zaslofsky and Experience Curating – SHP002

Slow Home Podcast Episode 2 - Joel Zaslofsky

Today I chat with Joel Zaslofsky, the founder of SimpleREV and one of the most interesting, organised humans I have ever met.

Joel is a spreadsheet aficionado who uses his data wrangling skills not to bore himself to sleep like I would (because spreadsheets and me are not friends) but instead to create a richer, more vibrant life. He is a huge advocate for the process known as ‘experience curating’ and we get into it in today’s show.

We also dig in to Joel’s journey from gaming addict to renaissance man, his struggles with learning to slow down and simplify (interestingly, dealing with clutter was not one of his obstacles) and his work to create a community of people who want to embrace a simpler, slower way of life.

This was such a great conversation and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

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Head over to iTunes to subscribe to the show and play the episode.

Alternatively, you can listen to the show directly from the blog, simply by hitting the Play button above. Enjoy!

——

What You’ll Hear About  in Today’s Episode:

  • Minimalism as a trend vs minimalism as a lifestyle
  • The emergence of brands trying to repackage stuff in order to sell it to simplicity advocates
  • Joel’s system of experience curating and its impact on living a simpler, more mindful life
  • The SimpleREV event, held annually in Minneapolis in October

Things to Check Out After Today’s Episode:

 Keep Listening:

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