Perusing the Sunday paper, coffee in hand, I came across an excerpt from Arianna Huffington’s new book, Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Wisdom and Well Being.
Rarely am I blown away by anything written in newspapers or their subsequent lift-outs anymore, but this piece had me reaching for the highlighter (truly) and reading every second paragraph out to a patiently-listening Ben.
Not so much because any of her thoughts on creating a slower, more mindful life were new to me. Moreso because I was excited to see these ideas being talked about in the mainstream media. Maybe there’s hope yet? Maybe we will work out that there is more to life than pursuing money, success, stuff and power?
As Huffington discovered (and many of us can relate to) it turns out that a life spent burning the candle at both ends; chasing money, power and accolades; and failing to connect with those who are most important will lead to burnout, exhaustion, depression and ever-increasing feelings of dissatisfaction, rather than the happiness so often expected.
I have to admit, having had five years to dissect my own feelings and my own story of burnout, there were parts of the article that had me saying, “Well, no kidding Arianna.” Which was quite unfair.
It really is exciting to see the idea of living a slower, more connected, more mindful life start to appear in the mainstream. I’m by no means a pioneer of the slow living movement (and definitely not a very good example) but I know how much slowing down and reconnecting has brought to my life. I see this blog as a place where I can put those ideas out into the world, and if it helps one person re-think their approach before they burnout, then I consider it worthwhile.
“Every conversation I had seemed to eventually come around to the same dilemmas we are all facing – the stress of overbusyness, overworking, overconnecting on social media, and underconnecting with ourselves and one another. The space, the gaps, the pauses, the silence – those things that allow us to regenerate and recharge – had all but disappeared in my own life and in the lives of so many I knew.”
Arianna Huffington, Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Wisdom and Well Being
So here’s to the space, the gaps, the pauses, the silence. Here’s to embracing five minutes of slow everyday. Here’s to savouring that cup of tea. Here’s to watching the wind in the leaves. Here’s to listening to the laughter of our children. Here’s to sharing a meal. Here’s to turning off our damn phones and having a conversation.
You can read the full article on the Sydney Morning Herald website.