Day 175 Slow

As you would know if you have been reading my blog this week, we are concentrating on one word a day. Today the word is…


By SLOW I mean *** back off a little *** take it easy on yourself *** take it easy on those around you *** do things at a pace that allows you to to be fully present *** give yourself time to make good decisions ***need I go on.

In this day and age of “multi-tasking”, over achieving, higher education and generally just keeping up with the Jones’s, it is very easy to cram your life full of expectations and activities that you think are necessary to appear successful. We are always in a rush to get somewhere, impatient with everything that might slow us down and sometimes resulting in road rage and accidents.

We no longer expect to have to wait for anything in this instant gratification society. I cop attitude everyday in my job just because a piece of furniture someone wants to buy is not in stock in our warehouse and they may have to wait for four weeks to take delivery. It’s a piece of furniture for goodnesss sakes not a heart/lung transplant. The world isn’t going to fall apart nor is your health going to suffer if your new giant LCD television has to sit on your coffee table for a couple of weeks.

See what I mean, my writing tells you I am getting more worked up about this subject as I speed through it letting my emotions get the better of me. That is what happens, we are so focused on cramming all the things into our lives that we have no time for anyone who might slow us down. Sadly in some cases that “anyone” is our family, our own children.

I for one don’t like to play this game but I am not going to suggest for one minute that I don’t get sucked into it on a regular basis but I try not to take it out on everyone around me. I have discovered that being in a hurry is mostly a state of mind, you don’t get things done faster or get anywhere quicker just because you are stressed out about it so there is no point rushing. As the saying goes “The more haste the less speed”.

What does this have to do with clutter and decluttering you might ask. Plenty…

  • If you try to rush the decluttering process you are likely to make rash decisions that you will regret in the future.
  • If you insist on getting the job done too quickly you may burn yourself out with anxiety when things aren’t moving fast enough for you and you will give up.
  • Accumulation of clutter can happen when you are in too big of a rush to look for something and end up purchasing a duplicate object to one you already have.
  • When you feel rushed, you get frustrated and more likely to take that out on those around you.
  • If you are in too big of a hurry to reach the finish line you may be neglecting others around you who also need your attention.

So give yourself a break, slow down and do things more deliberately with care and consideration. When you find yourself rushing and thinking ahead STOP, calm yourself and get back in the moment. I am sure you will be more satisfied with the results.


Just one more kitchen item out of the way.


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About Colleen Madsen

Colleen is the founder of 365 Less Things and lives in Newcastle, Australia.


  1. I’ve been thinking about this same topic recently. When you push too hard, you burn out or run out of energy. On the decluttering front, we (I) need to slow down and take a bit of a break. Thanks for expressing my thoughts for me 🙂

  2. i so agree with SLOW…just wanted to drop by and tell you i liked your post!

    • Hi Nikki,
      thanks for dropping in I hope you will join us often. When I say us I mean myself and my readers, I love the imput from all of you. Like I said to Willow if you like SLOW check out the latest post at Tiny Buddah.

  3. Going too quickly is very goal-oriented–you want to get to the end result asap. Going slow is process-oriented, and much more likely to allow you to enjoy what you have and how things are at the moment.

    Thanks for this post. I needed the reminder.

    • Hi Meg,
      it is funny isn’t it you can still get things do relatively quickly even when you are approaching it slowly. It doesn’t take me any longer to do my housework when I am mindful about what I am doing. When I am trying to get it over and down with and not enjoying the process I don’t get it done any faster butl I an usually stressed out during and at the end of it.

      Hi Amy,
      My father would often say two things that have stuck in my mind. One was “A job worth doing is worth doing well”. The other was “There is lazy lazy and there is smart lazy one achieves nothing and the other gets the job done well with the least amount of effort”. I prefer to be smart lazy and you can only do that by being mindful about what you are doing.

      Hi Cindy,
      the world is a better place just because you did not weaken and purchase an extra meat thermometer. That my sound silly but it’s true everytime we chose not the waste resources on something we don’t really need we are doing the environment a favour. I hope your home is starting to come together you will soon be able to take it easy and just enjoy the fruits of your labour.

  4. Love this post! I’m going to link to it today. Your point applies to so many areas of life. I know it makes a huge difference for me when I get overwhelmed at work to just stop, step back, and look at the big picture. When you relax, you can work smarter instead of harder!

  5. I have never heard “the more haste, the less speed” but Lord, how true that is!

    Cleaned out 9 boxes with my girlfriend yesterday. These were the last of the boxes that I put away during remodeling. (My husband’s boxes . . . that’s another matter!) When we finished, we had three boxes of items to take to the thrift store, and the rest was put away into its rightful place. Plus I found my missing meat thermometer and was estatic. I KNEW it had to be in one of those boxes and had refused to purchase another one, although I missed it badly. Yeah for me!