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Do you call your life “busy”?

Okay, I’m going to call you out on this. It’s your own B.S.

Yeah, I’m not a gentle delivery kind of coach. Sorry.

You’ve got to choose to slow down and savour the moment more. Put the brakes on sometimes in your life. Yes, you’ve got to choose it.

Pause, breathe and be more present in the moment. Otherwise you are missing out on living life well.

Living a mindful life is pretty tough in 2019 — I get that. Everything is on speed mode, works faster, is more efficient and, supposedly better …

But it’s in those slow moments where you are still, take time to look around and get two minutes to actually think which counts. It’s then that you can rejuvenate, get ahead and feel happier. And you definitely feel calmer.

You miss things otherwise if you are too darn busy. You miss checking in on loved ones and seeing and sensing how they are feeling. You miss feeling more in balance within yourself too. And instead you put your mind in a non-stop washing machine cycle. And that washing machine load can only last so long until it breaks down. Yeah, I’ve been there too …

Slow moments allow you to rejuvenate, feel happier and calmer, says Rachel Grunwell. Photo / Supplied
Slow moments allow you to rejuvenate, feel happier and calmer, says Rachel Grunwell.

I teach the “slow-mo message” to my yoga students often. I get them to acknowledge they genuinely are doing enough. I tell them they deserve to take time to nurture themselves more. Actually, the yoga class forces them to slow down at least once weekly.

So it’s worth turning up to a yoga and mindfulness class — for the body-work, but more so for the mind-work …

Five tips to steal back more time
1. Prioritise the people you care about. Make sure you spend time with them as a priority. Then don’t be afraid to push back catch-ups with other less priority people who may be stealing too much of your precious energy. For instance, I take the time to walk my son to school daily and read to him often because it’s important to us.
2. Use an app or pen and paper to track how much time you spend on social media. Take a hard look at those chunks of time. You may be surprised how many hours social media can chew through in a week if you let it.
3. Respond to emails twice daily. Have an automatic response advising you access emails in the morning and afternoon. Otherwise it can be something you attend to throughout the entire day. It’s not possible in some jobs to do this, but if it is, try it.
4. Prep vegetables for three meals in one go (like kumara, red onion, garlic, carrots, pumpkin or yams ). After you’ve cooked them, put them in the fridge. Each dinner time, take out some of the veg and add different leafy greens and varied protein. This changes up your meals and means you’ve only prepped and used the oven once.
5. Teach your kids to be more independent. I taught my 7-year-old son Finn how to make his own breakfast smoothie bowls recently. The frees me up to do other stuff — even if it’s a Sunday sleep-in.

Article originally published in The New Zealand Herald