Monday, December 21, 2015

Taking Things Slowly

The Northeast has been in the gentle grip of unseasonably warm weather, which has made the holiday season seem like an afterthought. No one I know feels a sense of impending holiday cheer and celebration. Most of what we’re doing is trying to remember to do whatever it is that we ordinarily do when things are different and the holiday rolls around, or something like that. But one aspect of this time of year has reappeared, almost insistently, for me.

December is when I stop to wonder if I did all that I meant to do. This isn’t about testing my activities in the past months against New Year’s resolutions. Instead, it’s about staying true to whatever life goals I’ve set for myself. Did I wander off course? Am I frittering away time? This is always a danger now that I’m retired. I think I have all the time in the world, and I don’t.

And that last sentence by itself tells me I've missed the mark sometimes.

I came across a word of advice years ago—I don’t remember where—but I repeat it to myself almost every week. “Don’t hurry your life.” I took this simple statement then, and do now, to mean, don’t be in a rush for whatever it is you think you want or are working toward. Perhaps others would call this being mindful, but I don’t think it’s quite the same.

“Don’t hurry your life.” Let things happen in their own good time. During what is usually a frantic holiday season, and may yet become one, I think this is good advice and I try to follow it. In this very slow holiday season, the advice seems the perfect commentary on what is (or isn’t) happening. This holiday season is slow, quiet, laid-back, a relief compared to previous years and what we consider normal. It feels as if the Universe is showing us what it's like when the advice becomes real. 

Don’t hurry your life. Take it slow and let it be richer for you.


  1. I agree with you--I've been so busy with work that the holidays seem like a distraction. And then I remind myself that I'm semi-retired! "Don't hurry your life" is good advice.

  2. Thanks, Kathleen. It always stops me from running around to no real purpose.