reading slowly

The Art of Slow

Some things are just better done slowly. In this world of Rush! Rush! Rush! It is time to slow down.

It is November 1, and I'm committed to doing things slowly in the areas that matter:

  • Slowly eating dinner with my husband and laughing over the silly little things that happen every day
  • Slowly stir the cookies with the wooden spoon so they come out the way my kids like them when they come home so we can 
  • Slowly sit beside the fire and catch up on our lives.
  • I'm going to slowly read some books, dig into the Bible this season, and reread old things slowly that will set my heart aflame anew.
  • Slowly workout so I can feel my muscles burn and grow as I continue back on my journey to health
  • Slowly talk to students about their hopes and dreams and listen to their thoughts and questions
  • Slowly consider the important things worth doing slowly and quickly, turning away from the distractions that waste my time and take me further from my goals. 

(I want to mention here that “people texting were 33% slower getting to their destination,” a statistic shared by Arianna Huffington in her book Thrive. She also advocates for slowing down as a means to success.)

Races We Need to Win…But it May Seem Slow to Us

Slow and steady wins the race.

I've been working out six days a week for 45 minutes on average for the last six weeks and am entering my seventh. The progress may seem slow, but it is substantial. I calculate it will take until November 2023 to get where I need to be, but I”m not done there.

But eating more slowly has been a problem for me as a teacher. (I think we learn to eat quickly so we can get our work done, and we don't slow down when we eat. Enough of that!)

"A growing number of studies confirm that just by eating more slowly, you'll consume fewer calories -- in fact, enough to lose twenty pounds a year without doing anything different or eating anything different."

Leo Babauta, The Power of Less, Location 1529 Tweet

A Slow Glow

On December 4th, I will walk a 10K at Calloway Gardens among the lights. I cannot run yet, but anything worth doing well is worth doing slowly at first. I”m going to drink in the lights and enjoy the moment. And when I come around the corner to the Hallelujah Chorus, it will mean so much to me, and because I'll walk more slowly than I run, I'll listen to it a few more times than usual.

We're slowly changing.

But here's what we have to understand. We're constantly changing — for better or for worse. And a decision to do nothing is a decision to make something — a decision to get worse.

"Mediocrity doesn't just happen suddenly; it develops slowly over time."

Todd Henry, Die Empty: Unleash Your Best Work Every Day Tweet

I should know. I could not walk for three months. Three months. And while I gained over 20 pounds, I lost a lot of muscle. So much so that when I started working out, I gained weight, I didn't lose it.

But I'm in this for the long haul.

There is a point when a boat is headed toward a waterfall that if it doesn't turn back, it will go over.

Likewise, there is a point in your and my health that if we do not take action to turn our health, we will only get worse. 

slow down

How will you slow down?

Slowing down before saying “yes” is a start.

When you say yes to something, you're always saying no to something else.

In my life, it is hard to slow down but I was forced to slow down for three months. Guess what? The world went on without me and it was ok. 

Perhaps I'm slowly understanding the important joys of life and I'm grateful to God to be learning them.

I might be slow sometimes to learn what is important, but once I understand, I'll never forget these lessons learned from slowing down. I refuse to let the fast pace of life cause me to forget what is important.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on this blog post or on Twitter @coolcatteacher. 

 

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Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis is a full-time classroom teacher and IT Director in Georgia, USA. She is Mom of three, wife of one, and loves talking about the wise, transformational use of technology for teaching and doing good in the world. She hosts the 10 Minute Teacher Podcast which interviews teachers around the world about remarkable classroom practices to inspire and help teachers. Vicki focuses on what unites us -- a quest for truly remarkable life-changing teaching and learning. The goal of her work is to provide actionable, encouraging, relevant ideas for teachers that are grounded in the truth and shared with love. Vicki has been teaching since 2002 and blogging since 2005. Vicki has spoken around the world to inspire and help teachers reach their students. She is passionate about helping every child find purpose, passion, and meaning in life with a lifelong commitment to the joy and responsibility of learning. If you talk to Vicki for very long, she will encourage you to "Relate to Educate" or "innovate like a turtle" or to be "a remarkable teacher." She loves to talk to teachers who love their students and are trying to do their best. Twitter is her favorite place to share and she loves to make homemade sourdough bread and cinnamon rolls and enjoys running half marathons with her sisters. You can usually find her laughing with her students or digging into a book.

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The Cool Cat Teacher Blog
Vicki Davis writes The Cool Cat Teacher Blog for classroom teachers everywhere