Experience Every Moment: What is Slow Living?
In the last few decades, the slow living movement has been on the rise. Take a deep breathe, calm your mind, and let Hidden Botanics tell you all about it.
It can be a hectic world out there, what with the internet showing us everything we could ever want (all at once), with screens in our homes and in our cars and in our pockets. The speed of life is accelerating, enabled by the instantaneousness of technology, which expects us to be connected and available at all times. We are building a world passing its own speed limit, we eat fast food and drink instant coffee and count our minutes instead of savoring them. We may feel like we need to spend every second of every day of every week doing another new and different and productive thing and that if we don’t, we aren’t living to our fullest potential. A stressful outlook, to be sure. This is where “slow living” comes in.
Considered, not careless.
Slow living is about letting yourself sit in moments more, and experiencing life at your own pace, taking in all the beauty around you. The name can be a little deceiving: it’s not merely about living slowly or lethargically, it’s about living in a considered and appreciative way. it’s about being more present in your day to day life, and not getting swept away by it.
Being able to see everything that anyone is doing at all times on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, we are shown the near-infinity of possibilities for how we could spend our time, and this has fostered FOMO - the Fear Of Missing Out. Slow living encourages us to prioritise and focus our attention only on the things that really matter.
The slow lifestyle isn’t necessarily about cutting out aspects of your life like they were dirty habits - it doesn’t ask you to delete all your apps and toss your phone in a lake - only that we recognise that no matter how quickly the world around us moves, no matter how much of it there is, our basic needs remain the same.
From slow food to slow living
Interestingly, what we call “slow living” began in Italy in the 1980s as the “slow food” movement that arose in protest to a fast food restaurant opening in one of the most famous squares in Rome. Slow Food (now an organisation) promotes traditional and regional cuisine, using locally-sourced ingredients, focussing on small businesses, sustainability, and food quality as opposed to abundance.
In his book “In Praise of Slow” Carl Honoré described slow living as “a cultural revolution against the notion that faster is always better”, saying that it was “about seeking to do everything at the right speed” and treating all aspects of our lives with the doctrine “quality over quantity”.
There are many ways we can start to live slowly - the first step is to identify our core values, and simplify our lives to focus on them, living consciously. We need to be self-aware and mindful, making sure that we aren’t losing sleep over a desire to squeeze every last drop of action we can muster out of our days.
Taking the time to be environmentally-conscious
Since it began as an opposition to the acceleration and industrialisation and food, the slow movement similarly incorporates slow fashion and slow consumption, understanding that to live consciously we need to engage with nature and understand how we treat and consume the wider world. Sustainability is a recurring idea within various aspects of the slow movement.
At Hidden Botanics, we encourage this slower, sustainable, appreciative lifestyle. We also believe strongly in the adjacent concepts of wabi-sabi - which teaches acceptance and calm in the face of an imperfect, impermanent, and asymmetrical world - as well as Shinrin-Yoku, that believes we all benefit from taking the time to escape from the modern world and place ourselves wholly into the natural world. Our range of floral pieces are not just sustainably sourced and made, but also fragrant and beautiful, allowing you to take in the natural world around you, even whilst at home. Also, by using dried flowers that retain their scent and colour while lasting significantly longer than fresh flowers, there is no rush. Stopping and smelling the roses can take as long as you like.