It’s easy to get caught up in the busyness of life and rush through it without taking time to truly appreciate what’s going on around you, or without taking time to stop and think about how your life has changed since you were younger.
In order to stop rushing through life, take note of these ten things you can do to slow down and appreciate the world around you.
Why We Tend to Rush Through Life
We rush through life because we’re always looking for the next best thing. We’re constantly chasing after something, whether it’s a new job, a new relationship, or a new car.
We think that if we can just get to the next level, we’ll be happy. But the truth is, we’re never truly happy because we’re always looking ahead to what’s next.
10 Ways to Stop Rushing Through Life
1) Take Time for Yourself
Think of your life as a table that’s getting covered in mess—and it’s only going to get worse if you don’t clear things off. Take some time for yourself every day, even if it’s just an hour or two, and try to slow down your pace.
Try taking up a hobby such as painting or running—something that gives you time away from other people, so you can be left alone with your thoughts.
2) Slow Down When Eating
When we rush through our meals, we tend to overeat and not savor what we’re eating. Start paying attention to your food, savoring each bite, and noticing how it makes you feel.
Chew slowly and eat in a relaxed environment. Slowing down while eating can help you eat less without realizing it. It also helps you appreciate all of your senses when eating: sight, smell, touch, and taste.
3) Focus on What You Are Good At
While it might sound like a cliché, there is some truth to that old saying Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.
Focusing on what you enjoy can lead to success and leave you less stressed, but also more relaxed. So, if you want to stop rushing through life, focus on things that make you happy.
Whether it’s an activity or a person, find something that brings joy into your daily routine and make time for it every day. When we are happy with our lives, we don’t feel as much of a need to rush around trying to fit everything in.
4) Enjoy the Little Things
Take a few moments throughout your day to slow down and enjoy every little thing you encounter. A cool breeze, amazing sunsets, a good conversation—these are all things that many of us miss out on because we’re in such a rush.
Take time each day to stop and appreciate these little things; by doing so, you will enjoy life so much more. When it comes to living your best life, taking care of yourself should be at the top of your list. So take some time for yourself today!
5) Don’t Compare Yourself to Others
Everyone’s path through life is different, and comparing yourself with someone else can often lead to self-pity.
Take comfort in your strengths instead of pining for what you don’t have. Acknowledge your shortcomings but make a conscious effort not to dwell on them.
This will save you from needless anxiety and take some of your focus off of impressing others.
Remember that everyone has flaws; it’s part of being human. Instead of constantly trying to live up to an impossible ideal, learn to accept who you are—flaws and all—and be happy with who you are.
6) Enjoy Silence
Silence is creative, says sound engineer for David Lynch, Alan Splet. It might seem counterintuitive, but it’s true. Sometimes all we need is a little silence (but not complete isolation).
We live in a culture of constant communication and so many of us feel that if we’re not connected 24/7 through our cell phones or computers, then we’re behind, missing out on important information or opportunities to be part of conversations happening around us. But what would happen if you unplugged?
7) Have Regular Family Time
Make sure you have time set aside each day for just your family. There’s no better way to get in touch with your inner child than spending quality time with your children.
Plus, by spending regular time together, you can keep from getting separated from your loved ones. Don’t let work and outside interests overwhelm what really matters.
Take a deep breath, put down your BlackBerry, unplug from that conference call, and find some time in your day for yourself and those you love.
8) Connect With Nature
There’s something calming about nature that just can’t be matched. If you live in the city, make time each week to get out of town and take a nature hike.
You don’t have to travel far; even a local park will do. Just being in nature has been shown to have a calming effect on the mind and body.
So, if you’re feeling stressed out and need to relax, get outside and take a nature break. You’ll be glad you did!
9) Work Out Regularly
When it comes to fitness, one size doesn’t fit all. You’ve got different goals and different needs. If you want to stop rushing through life, start by figuring out what’s right for you and making time for it in your schedule. The important thing is that you stay consistent over time.
Consistency is key when it comes to building healthy habits—and getting results. So no matter how busy you are, find a way to carve out some time each week (even if it’s just 15 minutes) and stick with it.
Soon enough, working out will become part of your routine and something you look forward to doing every day. And don’t forget: there are lots of ways to work out besides hitting up a gym or going on a run outside!
10) Create Routines
We rush through life not because we have to, but because we want to. In other words, there’s a real desire for speed in our lives that is often motivated by a need for efficiency.
Our routines are supposed to help us get things done more quickly and efficiently. But when our expectations outpace reality, it can feel like we’re not getting anything done at all.
And so we find ourselves rushing through life just trying to keep up with ourselves—and everyone else around us.
In a world where it seems like everyone’s always in a rush, it’s important not to lose sight of what’s important.
We shouldn’t be in such a hurry that we miss out on valuable opportunities—because every moment is a chance for us to learn something new, or connect with someone special.
After all, life is too short not to appreciate each and every second of it.