Top 10 Advantages to Slowing Down

I recently finished reading Small Change by Susan & Larry Terkel. The beginning for the book had a great chapter on how to apply small changes to your life. Like many of our clients who are trying to make changes, doing something large is overwhelming and often left untried. Susan & Larry suggest that small changes will add up to something big in the end.

On top of chapters on health, relationships, creativity and work, the chapter that resonated with me the most was small change for more happiness. Isn’t that what we are all about, living a happy life.

There was a section in the chapter on Slowing Down and the first line is, “Are you always in a hurry?” They suggest that one small change you could make is to slow down. It will make a difference in all areas of your life. The authors suggest 10 advantages to doing this exercise.

  1. Allows you to be more careful and lessens the chance of accidents
  2. Removes much of the stress caused by hurrying and worrying about it
  3. Makes you a safer driver
  4. Helps you to be more patient with everyone
  5. Gives you time to think before you speak, talk more slowly, and listen more carefully
  6. Allows you to be more mindful
  7. Makes you eat more slowly and allows you to enjoy your food
  8. Enables you to rely less on fast  and processed food and more on home-cooked meals and pleasant dining experiences
  9. Allows you to entertain more easily and make your guests feel more welcome
  10. Makes you feel as though you had more time to live life

In our fast paced world, it may be hard to consider slowing down, but if you want to improve one of these 10 areas of your life, slowing down may be the ticket.

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Janet Schiesl

Janet has been organizing since 2005. She is a Certified Professional Organizer and the owner of Basic Organization. She loves using her background as a space planner to challenge her clients to look at their space differently. She leads the team in large projects and works one-on-one with clients to help the process move quickly and comfortably. Call her crazy, but she loves to work with paper, to purge what is not needed and to create filing systems that work for each individual client. Janet is a Past President of the Washington DC Chapter of the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals (NAPO) and was voted 2016 Organizer of the Year by the Washington DC Chapter of NAPO.


  1. Linda Samuels on July 31, 2012 at 12:17 pm

    Janet- I love the emphasis on slowing down. It’s true that in our society of “fast” and “instant,” we often rush around so much that we miss many beautiful moments, conversations, interactions, and feelings. Slowing down enables us to be present and appreciative of where we are, who we’re with, and what we’re doing. Thank you for this post, the reminder and for letting me know about the book. Adding it to my “Books to Read” list.

    • Basic Organization on July 31, 2012 at 12:33 pm

      Thanks for reposting. I really work at slowing down to reduce the stress in my life. Keep running fast!

    • Basic Organization on July 31, 2012 at 12:36 pm

      Linda, your comments hit the mark. I think that you must take time to appreciate what you have to be happy. I liked the first few and last few chapters of the book the best, only because that is what I can apply to my life.

  2. runningwiththelambs on July 31, 2012 at 11:27 am
  3. September is Self-Improvement Month on September 3, 2012 at 4:27 am

    […] I read a book called Small Change and posted 2 blogs on my thoughts on the book. Here they are  Ten Advantages of Slowing Down and More Thoughts on Small Change. I found it to be an enlightening book and I am still continuing […]

  4. Janet Barclay on November 4, 2020 at 12:28 pm

    I don’t feel like I’m in a rush all the time, but I do find it very hard to just “be” and not “do” so I guess that’s the same thing. There are definitely items on your list that resonate with me!

    • Janet Schiesl on November 4, 2020 at 1:28 pm

      I’m working on slowing down too. I think society values busyness way too much. I am trying to focus on being more mindful but it’s a process.

  5. Anne Lyons on November 20, 2020 at 1:32 pm

    Such simple concepts that are so powerful!

    • Janet Schiesl on November 20, 2020 at 3:49 pm

      Thanks Anne. Simple concepts are easier to maintain. Don’t you think.

  6. Hazel Thornton on November 22, 2020 at 8:53 am

    This reminds me of my time management clients. They are often seeking ways to do more. In the process of decluttering their schedules, obligations, and task lists, I can usually influence them to do less. Slowing down and being more mindful of what we are doing leads to the 10 advantages you have listed….and more!

  7. Janet Schiesl on November 22, 2020 at 10:42 am

    Thanks Hazel. You are right. Focusing on the important things and letting the rest go is important in slowing down.

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