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Are you interested in a slower paced life, one of simple pleasures, and endless gratitude? If you’re here, then the answer to that question is likely a yes. Reading a selection of slow living books is a great place to start in learning more about the slow living lifestyle. In today’s post I break down which books I think would be good to start with.
Slow Living Books
My Story of Slow Living
I personally embarked on a slower living lifestyle years ago, and quite by accident, really. It wasn’t a grand epiphany that led me to slowing down. In fact, it was brought about by a chronic illness that has drastically changed my life since 2008.
Chronic illness tends to halt daily life as you once knew it, and your daily rituals, in such a way that slow and simple living just tends to naturally occur. And that was the case with me. But whether you do or don’t have a chronic illness, slower paced living could benefit anyone.
What does slow living mean?
According to Slow Living LDN slow living is “Slow living is a mindset whereby you curate a more meaningful and conscious lifestyle that’s in line with what you value most in life.”
I completely agree with that definition of slow living. It’s much more than what it sounds like at face value. It’s not just about doing yardwork instead of hiring it out, or playing cards instead of watching TV, or even tending to a small backyard garden. Yes, slow living can be those things but the grander purpose of slow living is to live in a mindset that is meaningful, allowing yourself to be grateful for what you value most.
The Benefits of Slow Living
Cooking a meal from scratch instead of eating out can help with your health and can foster a beautiful dinner experience with the family. Taking a nice walk around the neighborhood instead of laying on the couch will obviously be better for your health. Not rushing around from commitment to commitment will relieve the body and the mind.
Slow hobbies can often bring about a sense of meditation and relaxation than faster paced hobbies will. Instead of vegging out in front of the TV, why not pull out your hobby bag and get to stitching? Maybe go out back and play in the garden, get your hands in the dirt, experience nature – that can be so healing.
The more present and happy you are in your life, naturally the better your relationships can become. Instead of rushing around, mindlessly scrolling your phone, or thinking about your next item on the todo list to check off – which can be bad for connecting with those around you – you will be intentional and slower and more present.
Less Stressed and Happier
A slower paced life can bring about much less stress, which then will lead to be happiness. Just imagine how you feel on a vacation, or even when you take time off and stay home. Aren’t you less stressed, enjoy life more, and are happier? Think about that for your daily life. It is a wonderful by-product of this lifestyle.
So this all sounds great, right? You’re ready to learn more about this way of life, right?
Slow Living Books I Recommend
These books are in no particular order
Book Overview from Amazon:
“We live life in the fast lane. We race to keep up with the Joneses. We are over-worked, over-connected and over-stressed, and we compete over how busy and important and sleep-deprived we are. But we don’t have to. There’s an ever-growing group of people opting out of a life lived at 110%. They are choosing to slow down, simplify, say no and focus on the things that are truly important. Brooke McAlary is one of them. In Destination Simple, Brooke McAlary shows readers that no matter how busy you are, you too can feel in control of your days; minimize stress; find pockets of peace on even the busiest day; empty your mind and sleep better. Destination Simple shows us how a few changes to the flow of daily life can create long-term, lasting change.”
Destination Simple has a 4.4 out of 5 stars rating on Amazon.
Slow: Simple Living for a Frantic World
Book overview from Amazon:
“What is slow living? It’s a way to find happiness by stepping away from the never-ending demands to constantly succeed and acquire more and more. It’s easy to get stuck in the carousel of frantically wanting, buying, and upgrading the things in your life. The philosophy of simple living is about finding the freedom to be less perfect and taking time to enjoy the pure joys of life: a walk in the forest, sharing laughter with family, a personal moment of gratitude. Reconnecting with the living world can help you integrate moments of peace, joy, and mindfulness into an otherwise rapid life.
What you’ll find in this book:
Guidance for forming your own slow life
Ways to declutter and de-own
Tips to replace messiness with mindfulness
Paths forward to answer the question “Where to now?”
Slow: Simple Living for a Frantic World has 4.6 out of 5 Stars on Amazon.
Book overview from Amazon:
“This book is your entry into a world that spins slowly and draws its inspiration from the earth, the ocean, the sun and the sky. Each turn of the page through projects organized into chapters for the four seasons will lead to discover a new way to practice slow living and weave nature into your everyday life. Build a garden bed and plant seeds. Watch your vegetable garden grow, and pluck a tomato or two to make a salad. Go on a walk in the woods, build a campfire and then read the moon. Rediscover a childlike joy of nature through over 20 projects to cook, make or do outside. Grounded is the ideal way to put down your devices and spend time in natural surrounds with your friends, your family and, of course, yourself.”
Grounded has 4.6 out of 5 Stars on Amazon.
Book overview from Amazon:
“In an increasingly complex and chaotic world, we yearn to live a little slower, a little simpler.
For popular lifestyle blogger Merissa A. Alink, living slower has enabled her to eat healthier, develop stronger relationships with her friends and family, save money by spending less, and have more “in-real-life” time with her kids instead of more screen time. It has given her family more time to plant gardens, can produce, and sit down to wholesome, home-cooked meals. It has allowed her to do what is needed rather than what is expected.
Now she shares the secrets to living a simpler, slower life with anyone who is tired of feeling anxious, frenzied, or disconnected from the natural rhythms of life. She helps you reevaluate your priorities, seek God first, and take small steps toward a life more in line with your values, including decluttering to create space in your home and your mind, making simple and healthy meals, taking a weekly Sabbath, limiting the influence of media, and taking time to nurture your most important relationships.”
Living Slower has a 4.5 out of 5 star rating on Amazon.
The Art of Simple Living
Book overview from Amazon:
“A timely and stylish look at ways to experience the joys of simple living
Whether you want to make small changes to your life or you’re looking to transform it, The Art of Simple Living will show you the way to a more wholesome existence by literally simplifying all areas of your life. Whether it’s practical help on how to declutter your home, or streamline your belongings or advice on how to practise mindfulnesss, this stylish and elegant book presents a trove of ideas.
Find inspiration at home on how to make your mealtimes, free time and relationships more fulfilling, as well as suggestions for doing more with less when you are out and about. The advice and tips in this book will guide you towards a simpler life filled with joy, laughter and love. A perfect gift for self or for someone you know who would benefit from the joy of simpler living.”
The art of simple living has a 4.8 out of 5 stars on Amazon.
Wrapping it up
I hope this book list has been helpful to you. I hope you’ll find one or more of these books a great companion to your slow living journey. But please note that slow living isn’t about a set of rules. Slow living is an intentional state of mind, a place of being intentional about your day, about your life.
Some may find they enjoy gardening as a form of slowing down, meditating in nature, and being intentional with their lives while others may find that their slow life just means being present in each moment and finding the small moments of gratitude. While most of us will likely find that our practice of slow living is a mix of both ideas.
I hope you’ll enjoy learning more about slow living and find meaningful ways to make it happen for you.
Read more posts about slow living and slow living hobbies.
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Hi, I’m Nell. First, I’m a wife and mother, and a believer in Jesus. I’m also a writer of words, maker of art, and chronically ill warrior. This space is where I document this one big beautiful and flawed life. Essays and diary entries, poetry and art, and peaks into my heart. Welcome.