Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Slow Family Living (SFL): Series Introduction

The increasingly popular slow movement began in the 1980s in Italy with the concept of slow food. This was, as you might guess, a revolution in reaction to the fast food culture. Slow food is prepared using fresh, local, sustainably grown ingredients. Slow food meals may come from your own kitchen or from a restaurant, and they are eaten mindfully and savored. Slow foods are whole foods rather than the standard American processed fare. The sharing of a meal is an intimate act. Food is not meant to be wolfed down on the go.

From slow food, the revolution has grown to include other areas of life, such as slow travel, slow exercise, slow education, and slow family living. The slow movement is the antidote to the modern busyness addiction and plugged in state of affairs. In the spirit of the slow movement, I'm going to keep the posts in this series short, so that you may experience slow blog reading. I hope to chronicle the small steps I am taking toward a simpler, more mindful and meaningful life a little at a time, as I try new things and take the time to see how they work. To simply observe.

The first thing I have done is to deactivate my Facebook account. Yes, again. I have already experienced a profound difference in myself. Maybe it has to do with less screen time. Studies show that too much screen time causes depression. Even if you don't deactivate, try to limit yourself to checking your email and FB accounts only once a day. Dial down your number of groups to as few as you really need to belong to. Shut off your notifications. Pare down your friends list, and stay off the news feed. If you can, take a week totally off Facebook and other social media to detox. Then re-evaluate what you think you can live without.

I hope you will join me on this journey. Simply beginning it has already given me great hope. I ordered a book from the library that I highly recommend--The Lessons of St. Francis: How to Bring Simplicity and Spirituality into Your Daily Life, by John Michael Talbot. I invite you to join me in a slow movement conversation in the comments. We all need a sense of like-minded community. It's best to have this in person, but the internet can be a valuable tool for filling in those "real life" gaps, so let's talk!

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