How to Live a Slow(er) and More Peaceful Life

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Too often we rush through life. We speed through our neighborhoods and cities without truly seeing what we’re passing. We don’t have time for friends, and because of that when we truly need a friend no one is around. In the Amish community, travel is done at the speed of a buggy. They attend church with those who live closest to them. They help a neighbor, knowing they will have a day when help is needed. And because of that, peace comes. It’s peaceful to wave at a friend as your buggy travels past her home. It’s even more peaceful knowing that your friend has your back.

What inspiration can we get from the Amish to live a slower and more peaceful life?

Decide what’s important.

Make a list of three things important to your family, your job, and in your life. Years ago my husband and I decided to make dinnertime a priority. We gather our children (and sometimes friends) around the dinner table nearly every night. We protect our evenings. We don’t sign up our kids for many activities because knowing the people around the dinner table is more important. What is important to you? Too often we fill our days with too much and because of this we are always in a hurry. When you focus on the most important things you’ll give up much busyness.

Do less each day (yet invite others to join you).

Efficiency and accomplishment are prized in our society, but crossing off a to-do list isn’t as meaningful as connecting with others. The Amish appreciate family farms because they’re able to work side-by-side with their children. Even preschoolers are taught how to work and have responsibilities. Mothers don’t hurry through a chore. They do it at child-speed, knowing that their child’s help will someday lighten their load. The Amish also gather for tasks, such as canning, cooking, and quilting. They focus on one big thing and do it together. This brings peace to their schedule and their hearts.

Simplify your choices.

The Amish wear the same type of clothing. They don’t fill their lives with media entertainment. They cook the same recipes that their parents and grandparents cooked, which means they don’t waste time trying new things. It takes time to make choices, to try new things, and to follow the latest fads. Instead, pick fashion based on function rather than fads. Make a small list of favorite recipes. Spend time with a few favorite books. You’ll be surprised by how much time you’ll find!

Be thankful.

Instead of being busy trying to get more things — or feeling anxious by what we don’t have — thankfulness brings an inner joy. Today try a new phrase, “I have all I need, and I thank God for that.” God has given us so much, and when we take time to thank Him peace comes.

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Tricia Goyer (77 Posts)

Tricia is the author of more than 30 books and has published more than 500 articles for national publications such as Focus on the Family, Today’s Christian Woman and HomeLife Magazine. She won the Historical Novel of the Year award in both 2005 and 2006 from American Christian Fiction Writers, and was honored with the Writer of the Year award from Mt. Hermon Writer's Conference in 2003. Tricia's book Life Interrupted was a finalist for the Gold Medallion Book Award in 2005. Tricia's co-written novel, The Swiss Courier, was a nominee for the Christy Awards.


Comments

  1. A testament to the Amish and their cooking…my Mom and sisters and I have the privilege of having dinner annually with the same Amish family in Arcola, IL. There are certain things we always hope they’ll serve: fried chicken, corn, dinner rolls, and pies. They always do. Sometimes Edna Mae, the matriarch of the family, wonders out loud if we ever get bored of having the same thing every year. Everyone pretty much answers in unison: NO! Ha ha! Why change perfection?

  2. What a great story Jill Tracey! My dream is to one day live that simple life and be able to spend what extra time I do have opening my home and sharing God’s word with others.

  3. Mrs. Goyer,

    This is so true. When my husband passed away at 37 years old I looked at life very differently. I found that we were always living for that “one day” or “when we get to this point” then we’ll do… Don’t we all to some degree live that way? I learned to slow down and not put heavy expectations on myself and well, to be honest, live life a lot slower. You cannot imagine the peace it brought into my life. The world continues on around me and others have expectations of me that I should live as stressed out and hurried as they do, but I love my slower life.

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  1. […] How to Live a Slow(er) and More Peaceful Life~There is some truth here.  ”Decide what is important…Do less each day…Simplify your choices…Be thankful.” […]

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