Downshifting: the process of slowing down or becoming less active.
Wikipedia defines it as: “it is a social behavior or tendency in which the individuals live simpler lifes, to escape from obsesive materialism and reduce the pressure, the stress and the psychological disorders that come with it. It is highlighted that some balance between work and leisure must be found, and focuses life goals on the personal fulfilment and relationship building instead of consumerism and economic success”.
A real life change starts searchi an equilibrium, achievable through a critical eye towards oneself (critical thinking, look one self from the outside) and to be aware that the real downshifting is not an stereotypical version of change, considered as a flight abroad, but the ability to adapt, to understand and – if needed – to learn to change situations and start living in harmony with its own human being values.
Before I changed my life, I used to spent the most part of my days working very hard, next to people that i would never choose to share even the little of time of my existence.
Now, I spend my days in a suitable way with my natural rythms, taking care of my body, enjoying nature, close to my beloved onew, and working if and when is needed, but always trying to do what i really love to do.
Before, I had a good salary, but I used to “push the boat out”, by buying every kind of item or expensive garment I did not really needed, and I did not even used.
Now, you will certainly will be surprised reading my book and discover how to spend less money and in a better way, give myself a great satisfaction, much more fully than the one I felt when I was wasting it .
It is very important to say, before starting, that this change requires a very deep capacity to adapt to a modest life: it is necesary to learn to have a more parsimonous way of life.
This process is not valid for everyone; many people would not be able to adapt to my new life style, and maybe they dont even want to do it…for me this is fascinating.
If you don’t understand and solve the real reasons of your discomfort, they will chase you everywhere.
There is no need to catch a plane to learn to marvel once again, to see the world through the eyes of a child.
What you now think is a hard and cold winter, that gets into your bones and that you get to hold only because it takes you to the spring and the summer, can give you again the same emotions, beautiful and new, that you felt as a child, when you saw snow for the first time.
After all, many winters are able to amaze because of their beautiful and charming landscapes, and know how to gift with much more intense emotions and memories than many springs.
Wouldn’t you like to be surprised again and beeing able to feel new emotions every single day? That would be great, wouldn’t it?
Why couldn’t that happen to you?
Maybe when reading my books, you would come to visit or maybe to move yourself to Fuerteventura: let me tell you that this island doesn’t fits for everyone.
Its wind, its sand, its location in the midle of the ocean is not going to make it easy for you.
In my books I explain how I have prepared the best strategy for me.
You know… it doesn’t matter where you are but how do you feel: moving somewhere else is a very serious thing to do, that would not work for many people.
I explain as well that for a couple to move together can be a challenge.
Despite that it might seem fascinating to “start from scratch” on a new, unfamiliar place, without a real and careful planification this could be a change, but for WORST.
To think “to know everything” and launch into projects or maybe invest all your money without having a good strategy, can lead you to very negative consecuenses, which you will have to face for many years to come.
Are you sure you are able to quit your job?
To the prestige, to a fix salary, to the same and reassuring daily routine, to have obligations, to hear your mobile that is always ringing and that makes you feel “essential”?
During my working background, I use to fill my days to the point I did not have a single spare moment.
I was always in a hurry, chased by the clock: that I complained about it, but deep inside I was proud to define myself as “always too busy”.
I think that sometimes, this helped me to get some legitimacy, to feel useful, or maybe to exorcise lonelyness.
Loosing the prestige provided by your job, and suddenly be free to use your time, can be unsettling.
It is necessary to understand those new sensations: only this way will you make you able to enjoy your new way of life.
I have learned a lot about myself from the way I have managed the sensations that my change generated.
For many years, while working, sitting in my office, I dreamed on strolling over the golden sand, while the sea was wetting my feet and erasing my footprints.
Some very stressful days, I was very sad with motivation at all. Then I started counting the days on the calendar over my desk, where laid some pictures of beautiful beaches, and I imagined showing up on the picture, smiling and happy.
I cant find the right words to explain the absolute sense of happiness I felt the first day on the beach after I quit my job and move to my “beautiful island”.
I couldn’t belive it! I went in and out the water, a bit cold, and those purifying baths have restored props of enthusiasm that I thought lost for good..
But after 10 days of baths, my brain (used to study and work hard for 35 years), started telling me:
“Now what? What’s next? The day is long, we have to do something useful…we cannot wast any more time!”
I was like an stranded whale, I felt drowning out of my natural habitat.
WHAT COULD BE MORE CONSTRUCTIVE THAN TO FIND YOURSELF?
WHAT COULD BE MORE PRECIOUS THAN TO BE THE “MANAGER OF YOUR OWN TIME”?
There is no greater luck than being free to decide how – and most of all – with whom to spend your time.
I have needed more than three months to get used to my new rythms and to be really the person that appears on the happy picture of my old calendar.
Now I know how to enjoy the wonderful opportunity of beeing able to spend my time with the person I love, to cherish my health, my passions and my talents.
Don’t belive this as a easy thing: first I had to understand and cherish loneliness, to learn to manage the huge and precious sensation living days without chores, without obligations.