slow summer days

The summer holiday has begun and with those hot temperatures it really feels like summer! Do you also have exceptional warm and dry summer days? Are you enjoying the summer days and looking forward to your holidays?

Summer days… not getting up on time, listening to birdsongs in the morning, having a calm breakfast outside with a handful of freshly picked berries from the garden, enjoying the fresh air before the summer heat begins, lazy afternoons reading under our willow trees, walking barefoot, playing water games with our girls, making jam and syrup with fresh berries, enjoying the day as it unfolds and taking things as they come, watching the tiny insects as they pass by,  hearing the whispering sounds of seed heads swaying in the hot wind, making dinner with harvested veggies from the garden, watching the sunset in the evening while listening to an endless refrain of crickets, long evenings by candle light (with citronella!), … . Oh,  how I love this slow and natural rhythm of summer!

These kind of summer days  might seem a little too unrealistic although that’s the picture perfect I have in my head. I must admit I find it hard to slow down and take a pause and enjoy all these slow luxuries summer offers us. After all, it’s holiday and it’s a time to relax, to slow down the rush, to recharge the batteries.

No rushing, no tight schedules, no stressful and rushed feelings, no need to watch time, no endless lists of things need to be done, … that’s my kind of perfect and idyllic summer holiday. What about you?

But how hard is it to really live in this slow and relaxed pace during a holiday. What makes it so hard to live this way and look for authenticity, calmness and gratefulness. Not rushing for more and striving to get everything done. Why is it so hard to do nothing, to allow ourselves to stop, to rest, to breath and to connect? When I reflect on it, I always come back to the way we think.

What if we would really savor the life we have? Like when you pick the first tomato from the garden and really taste its delicious sweet and rich flavour. Savoring the fruits in our lives helps us to unrush and it makes us abundantly grateful.

I can already hear the “buts” popping up in my head (and maybe yours too). “But” there’s just so much to do, “but” slowing down to pick the proverbial flowers feels impossible, “but”where will that get me anyway?

When we intentionally unrush our pace, no matter the cost, we make margin for the meaningful. Let’s get inefficient for a while. Our devices have, in many ways, made us busier than before. While they should have given us more rest. Isn’t that a strange contradictory?

We don’t have to live that busy way. We can choose to unrush, but it won’t come easily. It will ask another way of thinking. Unrush our schedule by savoring what matters and looking at the big picture. How often am I not concerned with unimportant futilities or unnecessary details? When I would see these things that I need to get done in the bigger picture, they wouldn’t look essential at all.

And what if I would make a mind shift and change the “have to” into “get to”. This simple shift in perspective could change everything. “I have to make pick berries and make jam” can change into “I get to pick berries and make jam. They just grow in the garden and are full of healthy vitamins. I’m able to pick these perfect tiny fruits and I can preserve them for the coming months”. 

I’v decided to start again with writing down again a list of things I’m grateful for, savoring the fruits in my life… and grow gratefulness and slowness during these summer days.

I hope you will have some beautiful slow summer days too!

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