busyness - hurry

Slow down and everything you are chasing
will come around and catch you.

John De Paola


I think my work has to do with a sense that we are attempting, all the time, to create a logical, rational path through the day.  To the left and right there are an amazing set of distractions that we usually can't afford to follow. But the poet is willing to stop anywhere. . . . And it's that willingness to slow down and examine the mysterious bits of fluff in our lives that is the poet's interest.

William Collins

If you're having difficulty coming up with new ideas, then slow down.  For me, slowing down has been a tremendous source of creativity.  It has allowed me to open up--to know that there's life under the earth and that I have to let it come through me in a new way.  Creativity exists in the present moment.  You can't find it anywhere else.

Natalie Goldberg

Always remember to slow down in life; live, breathe, and learn; take a look around you whenever you have time and never forget everything and every person that has the least place within your heart.


But by taking the time away, getting myself off the treadmill, and just slowing down and learning, I felt I had so much more to give back. And maybe that was something that needed to happen for all of us.

Lindsey Buckingham


Slow down and enjoy life.  It's not only the scenery you miss by going 
too fast--you also miss the sense of where you are going and why.

Eddie Cantor


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It is important from time to time to slow down,
to go away by yourself, and simply be.

Eileen Caddy


Some of the secret joys of living are not found by
rushing from point A to point B, but by
inventing some imaginary letters along the way.

Douglas Pagels
These Are the Gifts
I'd Like to Give to You


For fast-acting relief, try slowing down.

Lily Tomlin

And so taking the long way home through the market I slow my pace
down.  It doesn't come naturally.  My legs are programmed to trot
briskly and my arms to pump up and down like pistons, but I force
myself to stroll past the stalls and pavement cafes.  To enjoy just
being somewhere, rather than rushing from somewhere, to somewhere.
Inhaling deep lungfuls of air, instead of my usual shallow breaths. I
take a moment to just stop and look around me.  And smile to myself.

For the first time in a long time, I can, quite literally, smell the coffee.

Alexandra Potter
The Two Lives of Miss Charlotte Merryweather

When was the last time you stopped to listen to the wind blow through the
trees?  Or stopped to listen to a river as it flowed past you, or the crickets
and frogs and other living things as they make their music?  When was
the last time you listened--truly listened--to a favorite song, paying
attention to the lyrics, the drums, the rhythm, the guitars or strings?

tom walsh

There is more to life than increasing its speed.

Mohandas Gandhi

Half our life is spent trying to find something to do with the time we have rushed through life trying to save.

Will Rogers

Youíre only here for a short visit. Donít hurry, donít worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way.

Walter Hagen

busyness - hurry

Don't run through life so fast that you forget not only where you've
been, but also where you are going.  Life is not a race,
but a journey to be savored each step of the way.

Nancy Simms

A slower-paced life means making time to enjoy your mornings, instead of
rushing off to work in a frenzy.  It means taking time to enjoy whatever
youíre doing, to appreciate the outdoors, to actually focus on whoever
youíre talking to or spending time with ó instead of always being
connected to a Blackberry or iPhone or laptop, instead of always
thinking about work tasks and emails. It means single-tasking rather
than switching between a multitude of tasks and focusing on none
of them.  Slowing down is a conscious choice, and not always
an easy one, but it leads to a greater appreciation for life
and a greater level of happiness.

Leo Babauta


By slowing down and relishing the unfolding of every experience, you
arenít choosing to be less accomplished or productive than others.
Youíre choosing to be accomplished and productive in ways they may
not even understand.  Youíre choosing to change whatís within your
own heart and mind, thereby becoming a part of the solution rather
than a part of the problem.  By no longer rushing through, youíre choosing
to stop focusing so much of your energy on the wanting and yearning,
the wishing it was done, the frustration with what hasnít happened yet; and
to make, instead, the most of every experience as it unfolds at its own pace.

Nea Justice


Rushing around from one activity to another, focusing on getting things done,
we tend to place all our priorities on accomplishing tasks on our lists Ė doing
routine housework; preparing meals and eating; commuting to work; getting
things done at work; putting in time at the gym; driving our kids to soccer
games, swimming lessons, and birthday parties; staying in touch with friends;
taking the dog to the groomer; and so on. Are you tired yet? In the midst of
it all, we become slaves to our to-do lists and become doers instead of be-ers.
We give ourselves little or no time feel, to more fully experience much of our
lives. We forget that our capacity to feel is the very essence of our vitality.
Without feeling, we become zombies or robots, and after a while we are left
with a vague sense that our lives are unfulfilled, empty,
lacking purpose, and devoid of anything resembling vitality.

Anat Baniel

My life had become an endless race against the clock. I was always in a hurry,
scrambling to save a minute here, a few seconds there. My wake-up call came
when I found myself toying with the idea of buying a collection of One-Minute
Bedtime Stories Snow White in 60 seconds. Suddenly it hit me:  my rushaholism
has got so out of hand that Iím even willing to speed up those precious moments
with my children at the end of the day. There has to be a better way, I
thought, because living in fast forward is not really living at all.
Thatís why I began investigating the possibility of slowing down.

Carl Honorť

I stood still, paralyzed by the beauty and the magic of this moment. Everything stopped, even my breath. Like a sloth, I didnít want to move. There was nowhere else I needed or wanted to be. Standing there absorbing the beauty of this place, I stepped out of time. In this timeless moment, I saw and felt the unity of all things. There it was all around me: the chaos of the natural world, silently woven into a tapestry of exquisite, perfect order. I felt at one with the trees, rocks, plants, birds, insects, squirrels, leaves, and water. A witness to this sacred scene, I felt humbled and blessed to be given this moment.
   So, this is what the slow lane is about, I realized. Sipping and savoring tiny moments, stopping the clock and slipping out of time, feeling my own heart begin to synchronize with the rhythms of nature and being in the presence of the sacred. Not bad learning for a single visit. I can see possibilities here.
   And then, the moment ended and time began again. Reluctantly, I headed back to ďcivilizationĒ. I could hear the ever-present music of the freeway in the distance. Back to business as usual, the world full of cars, trucks and the people inside them; barreling towards their destinies at speeds too fast to notice life.

Judith Rich

We live in a tense, hard-driving generation, thinking we just
have to get there in a hurry.  Why, I'll never know.  And it's
wonderful what a little slowing down can do.
   We don't need a horse-drawn carriage to slow the pace; there
are other ways.  The trick is to break our rhythm.  One way
might be to try walking to Grandma's house with the family,
instead of taking the car.  Or try making a real homemade cake,
instead of using a "mix."  We might take time to go through the
family photo album slowly, reliving the pleasant moments; or
take the long way to the store one day, stopping at points of
interest, looking for things we never particularly noticed before.
   Breaking the pattern of rush, rush, rush can restore our bodies
and our minds and can bring an oasis of healing
calm in the midst of stress.

Norman Vincent Peale

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busyness - hurry

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The average American sees just about as much of real life, of the things worth while, as we see of the beautiful scenery through which we pass, driving our cars at high speeds.  Of course now and then we divert our eyes long enough to get a hasty glimpse of a mountain peak or a beautiful valley or a gorgeous sunset, but the beautiful scenery, the details of the glorious flowers, are all lost upon us.

All the wonderful details of little experiences, the fine courtesies, the exquisite things of life, the things that are worth while, are lost to us because we live at such a terrific pace.  We cannot take time to see things, to appreciate them, to enjoy them.  We do not take time to enjoy our friends.  Our whole mind is anxiously focused upon the machine and the road in front of us.

We are like the men who carried the mails on the pony express.  We are borne along at a terrific speed, and we only dismount to mount again.  And so we go tearing through life forever changing from a tired to a fresh pony.

Bent forms, premature gray hair, heavy steps, and feverish haste are indicative of American life. Restlessness and discontent have become chronic, and are characteristic of our age and nation.

This straining, struggling, and striving is not life; it is a fever, a disease, well named Americanitis.  It bears no relation to happiness.

Orison Swett Marden
The Joys of Living (1913)


Yes, life can be mysterious and confusing--but there's much of life that's actually rather dependable and reliable.  Some principles apply to life in so many different contexts that they can truly be called universal--and learning what they are and how to approach them and use them can teach us some of the most important lessons that we've ever learned.
My doctorate is in Teaching and Learning.  I use it a lot when I teach at school, but I also do my best to apply what I've learned to the life I'm living, and to observe how others live their lives.  What makes them happy or unhappy, stressed or peaceful, selfish or generous, compassionate or arrogant?  In this book, I've done my best to pass on to you what I've learned from people in my life, writers whose works I've read, and stories that I've heard.  Perhaps these principles can be a positive part of your life, too!
Universal Principles of Living Life Fully.  Awareness of these principles can explain a lot and take much of the frustration out of the lives we lead.



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