Positive Change by Slowing Down

Forest Ranch Regenerative presents five ways to regenerate the environment and community.  One of them is to SLOW DOWN.  When we slow down, we see more clearly, and we understand more about each choice and each process.  We start to get the “why.” How can we change the belief that “faster is better.” It’s not–not in farming, not in education, not in business.

Three Ways to Slow Down

01. Observe 10 Times, Interpret Once

As part of a venture startup, I first heard the term “MVP” or Minimum Viable Product.  It’s also generally referred to as rapid prototyping. Creating a minimum viable product means finding the easiest cheapest way to get something to market to test it; whatever waste created by lack of thought is written off as a cost of doing business. This cycle becomes observation, interpretation, deploy, and repeat. We see this process reflected in our desire for disposable products.  Computer software is released quickly with many flaws that will be fixed later. How much waste can be avoided if we would simply take time to observe longer and more wholly? Permaculture is a farming philosophy that asks us to work with nature to create overyielding polycultures and one of the ways it suggests we do this is by treating observation, waiting, and seeing as important work that comes BEFORE interpretation.

Make time to observe and make things that work.

02. Recognize & Embody Moments

The natural world is constantly providing you with moments to learn something and develop yourself.  This can take place in nature, in your home environment or at work. But if we never recognize those moments or really put ourselves and our ego into what we are doing and experiencing, those moments will pass us by.  In our productivity-obsessed culture, ideas like “multitasking” further a sickness that constantly takes us out of the present moment.

Disconnecting from electronics also can bring us back to the present and the task or lesson at hand. As our lives are saturated with media as well as the devices that deliver it, media fasts can be a critical form of self-care.

More important than what to disconnect from is whom and what to RECONNECT with.  If you give pause and make space, these important moments will become increasingly apparent.

03. Go Perennial

While this could seem out of place as a strictly agricultural consideration, it isn’t.  So many of our problems are caused by wanting quick results. We engage in annual agriculture or the growing of plants whose life cycles complete in a single year or season.  This helps us because they grow fast but degrades soil, land, air, and water rapidly. Annual agriculture in itself has, according to some historians, led to the downfall of many civilizations because of its effects. Perennial Agriculture, on the other hand, is slow to start but more abundant over time while actually not requiring much from and even healing its environment. By applying these concepts to Perennial Culture we can think long term including future generations and feed our bodies and spirits constantly with little toil.

So for one, quite literally plant more perennials. 🙂 Then, observe these and think of how to perennialize your life and attitude.

2 thoughts on “Positive Change by Slowing Down”

  1. Something in #1 gave me a flashback to DMAIC six sigma methodology (I’m not sure I should thank you for that!). Rapid prototyping for us in automotive was to avoid the real customers finding the issues, but I do get your meaning. I must admit to pushing the boundaries here; particularly in the range of plants….

  2. Pingback: The Way Forward – Forest Ranch Regenerative

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