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On settling, slowness and fitting out a new house: A Hostful

“On your slow journey don’t forget to give yourself permission to fail…in a fast paced world.”

Ben McAlary

Hostful formation: engage!

Before we get in to today’s episode (the last of Season 3 and how did that happen?) and all the juicy listener questions you sent in, this poggie begins on a bittersweet note as we bid a very fond farewell to two team members who have played an integral role on the poggie and general Slow Home activities over the past few years.

Ryan, our audio engineer/producer extraordinaire, who has been with us for three years, moves on to a great role in the Australian podcast community and Steph our ‘right hand woman’ and social media guru, is going back to study full-time. To both: we salute you, are grateful for how much you’ve helped this podcast and community grow and improve over the years, and we love your guts.

Once we wipe away our tears and (literally) play Steph and Ryan off in to the sunset, we dive head-first in to your terrific listener questions. These include:  

  • Apart from people, what do you most miss about Canada and the US? And what are you most glad to have in Australia?
  • Is it easier to live slower in Australia or in the US/Canada?
  • What are you finding challenging in regards to slow living, and what are you doing in response?
  • What area did you decide to buy and live in, and why did you chose that area?
  • Were you ever nervous about not being close to the city, not being close to family and instead living in a rural area?
  • Are you living mortgage free?
  • Is there a slow way to manage money?
  • Slow aspirations versus fast career path advice please?
  • What is your ultimate ’slow’ date night? 
  • How have you gone re-buying things for the house? Slowly or all at once? 
  • Have you bought things you gave away when you left for your trip? 
  • What made Ben choose to go to therapy? 
  • What are your favourite books of 2019? 
  • Is Brooke currently writing a book?
  • What poggies are you currently listening to? 
  • When will the next season of the podcast start? 

As always, we do our best to answer these as honestly as possible (if not always, or ever, briefly) and appreciate having a community of listeners who want to dig in to what it really means to live a slower life. Thank you so much for turning up not only in asking these questions, but for this entire season. It’s been wonderful to see how many people have enjoyed our look at slow living from seven very different perspectives and we can’t wait to bring you Season 4.

We don’t want to give too much away, but next season of the pogpast will be very different, as we continue to experiment and try to provide you, our listeners, with practical tips on how to live a slower, more intentional life. But we can tell you that Season 4 will be in your poggie feed in late October. 

Until then… take it slow friends. xx

Head over to iTunes to subscribe to the show and play the episode.

Or you can listen to the show directly, simply by hitting the Play button above. Enjoy!

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Things to Check Out After Today’s Episode:

As always, thank you for listening!

Love Slow? Support the show!

Beth Kempton on the slow way of wabi sabi

Image via Holly Bobbins

“The wisdom we need now is buried in history.”

Beth Kempton

There are so many things I’ve loved about this season of the poggie. The guests, the hostful questions we’ve received (more on those next week), the way each episode has been infused with hope and positivity.

I’ve also loved that this season has been an exploration of slow living through a variety of different lenses, looking at what constitutes ‘slow’ from new perspectives.

Today’s episode, the second-last of the season, is no different as I chat with author and Japanologist Beth Kempton about slow living through the lens of Japanese culture. Or more specifically, through the lens of wabi sabi.

Complex to define, wabi sabi is an exploration of acceptance and contentment. An acknowledgement of the true nature of life and as such is a really powerful way of shifting our worldview.

Beth introduces me to the complex nature of wabi sabi and we discuss how the idea of perfect imperfection can impact the way we purchase and consume things, the way we connect with people and the environment around us, and how it’s a welcome respite in a world that calls us to constant comparison and competition.

We also discuss whether wabi sabi, or any personal philosophy really, has the power to change the world, as well as the beauty of creating and honouring pockets and rituals of slowness in a busy life.

We talk about our favourite experiences from our time spent in Japan and I can’t help but talk about the joyful time I’ve spent in onsens with my daughter. I know I’ve spoken about it on the podcast before, but onsening has had such a lovely impact on my life, both in terms of the ritual of bathing and being intentional throughout what is often treated as a mundane part of life, but also the acceptance of self that comes with the experience. It’s truly been one of the best discoveries of my life.

This ties in to wabi sabi in a way I hadn’t expected, because (from my very limited understanding) wabi sabi seems to offer self-compassion and grace where I’ve previously had self-loathing and discomfort. And if we’re in need of anything right now – in a world that profits off our comparing and competing – it’s probably a little more self-compassion and grace.

Enjoy!

Questions featured in this episode: 

  • What is wabi sabi?
  • Wabi sabi is the opposite to many of the things harming people and planet – mass consumption, convenience, keeping up with the Joneses etc. Do you think it has the power to change the world?
  • You write that wabi sabi helps us to seek meaning beyond materialism. How does it do that?
  • Do you think that contentment – as opposed to outright brilliant happiness – is something worth striving for?
  • What are some small rituals that we can adopt in to our lives now that help us to bend and stretch time, slowing it down and making it feel abundant?

Head over to iTunes to subscribe to the show and play the episode.

Or you can listen to the show directly, simply by hitting the Play button above. Enjoy!

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Things to Check Out After Today’s Episode:

As always, thank you for listening!

Love Slow? Support the show!

Emily Stochl on the planet-saving power of shopping second-hand

You may know by now that the fashion industry is one of the leading planet polluters,  and you also may know that fast fashion (cheap, poorly made fashion that’s created for very short-term wear) is a huge part of the problem. 

One of the best ways that we as individuals can begin to reduce our own carbon footprint and slow the impact we’re having on our home planet is to stop supporting the producers of fast-fashion (no matter how cute their current season is) and to start buying second-hand clothes.

But if you’re anything like me and a little clueless about how to become a good second-hand shopper, then maybe you need some guidance. I have found the occasional gem in a second-hand store and bought a few nice things online over the years, but whenever I find myself in a vintage store or an op-shop, chances are I’ll walk out feeling a bit deflated because I’ve gotten overwhelmed. Today’s guest is here to change all that and I personally couldn’t be happier!

In today’s poggie I chat with Emily Stochl, a passionate thrift shopper and host of the Pre-Loved Podcast – a show all about shopping second-hand, why it matters and what it means to us. Emily has the best advice on how to get started with second-hand shopping, how to make sure your bargain is money well spent and why it’s important to take it slow when thrifting. 

Emily also talks about the rise of ‘eco fashion’ on the high street and why we need to be cautious of greenwashing in the fashion industry, and shares why second-hand shopping is one of the most effective, fun, self-expressive ways to lower our personal carbon footprint. 

This is a really fun, action-oriented episode that will hopefully leave you feeling ready to take on the wonderful world of thrift next time you need to buy something.

Questions featured in this episode: 

  • What’s your primary motivation for thrifting? Is it environmental, the thrill of the hunt, finding things no-one else wears? 
  • What’s the first step to begin our second-hand shopping journey?
  • How can a devoted high-street shopper begin to slow their fashion habit? 
  • What do we need to be aware of when donating our unwanted clothes? 
  • What are your thoughts on the rise of eco fashion in the high street?

Head over to iTunes to subscribe to the show and play the episode.

Or you can listen to the show directly, simply by hitting the Play button above. Enjoy!

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Things to Check Out After Today’s Episode:

As always, thank you for listening!

Love Slow? Support the show!

Katie Patrick on how to save the world

“If we really want to change the world, we need to slow down.”

Katie Patrick

Often on the podcast we dance around the topic of technology – usually viewing it as something that gets in the way of our efforts to slow down and live a more mindful, sustainable life. But what if we embraced technology and viewed it as the greatest opportunity we have to change (or maybe even save) the world?

In this week’s episode I chat with Katie Patrick, an environmental engineer and designer who applies data-driven, gamification, and behavior-change techniques to solve the world’s environmental problems.

And upon reading that you might think, “What does that have to do with slow living?” but let me share with you that it has everything to do with slow living.

In our conversation today, Katie shares how it’s only possible to access our full creative potential (the same creative potential that we need to access if we want to create world-changing solutions) if we learn to slow down. (Yes I said “Woah,” out loud when I first heard this.)

And in further narrative-shattering news, Katie tells me that our brain does not function in its optimal, problem-solving state if we spend all of our time stressed out and rushing. So in that sense, day-dreaming and doodling and working on creative projects with no specific outcome attached is not only good for our health, but it’s good for our brains and the planet itself.

There are a lot of people who listen to this podcast who want to change the world in both big and small ways. Maybe you want to reduce plastic waste or encourage people to compost. Maybe you’re spreading peace throughout your neighbourhood by teaching meditation or simply being that oddball aunt or uncle who teaches young kids random facts about flowers in the hope that one day they will grow a love of nature and a desire to protect it.

No matter how you want to change the world, this episode is full of strategies and suggestions on how to do it. Not only in your own efforts, but in inviting others to join your efforts too. Because I think that’s one of the biggest hurdles we face right now in making big, world-changing efforts: how do we get others onboard?

Katie brings with her a completely new perspective on what it’s going to take to change the world, and it’s a refreshing, hope-filled, imagination-fuelled joy to listen to. This episode has so much juicy goodness for us to think about and I can’t wait to see what world-shaking changes it brings about in all of us.

Questions featured in this episode: 

  • What role does optimism play in our ability to change the world?
  • Why do we need to slow down in order to access our creative potential?
  • If we lead busy, full lives, how can we make space and time for creativity, particularly when it feels like a ‘nice to have’ rather than a necessity?
  • What’s the link between optimism and taking action?
  • Why do you think the current environmental, climate crisis messaging is falling flat for so many people? What can we do to change it?

Head over to iTunes to subscribe to the show and play the episode.

Or you can listen to the show directly, simply by hitting the Play button above. Enjoy!

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Things to Check Out After Today’s Episode:

As always, thank you for listening!

Love Slow? Support the show!

Kali Gray on body positivity, mindful eating and living counter-culturally

“Life’s too short to worry about the size of your thighs or the calories in a latte.”

Kali Gray

Is there a link between the rise in consumerism, the endless advertising messages that assault us thousands of times a day and the increase in body image issues? According to today’s guest, the answer is a resounding yes.

I’m so excited to bring you today’s episode because it brings yet another perspective to this season’s conversations on what it is to live a slower life and the myriad ways we can apply the ideas of slow.

Today I chat with Kali Gray, a body confidence expert and a “non diet” dietician who focuses her work on helping people heal their relationship with their bodies and their food.

In this episode we discuss the the relationship between food security and body image issues, while also looking at the crossover between my work in slow living and Kali’s work in reframing our perspective on food, self-care, self-worth and the food we eat.

So much of what Kali teaches is centred on self-compassion and self-care, and how those things can help us to heal those relationships, which is where I think it most closely links with slow living. In order to learn self-compassion and self-care (particularly in a world that profits from our self-loathing) we first need to slow down and pay attention.

Pay attention to the stories we tell ourselves about our bodies and the role food has in our lives, pay attention to the way media messaging, advertising and social media are keeping us in a negative relationship with ourselves, and pay attention to how we feel when we start making changes to our thoughts, habits and actions.

Kali also turns the interview tables around on me towards the end of the episode, which sparks a conversation on how all of these changes take time, and no matter how well-versed we are in consumerism, health, wellness, body image and food, there’s always going to be part of us that requires a little extra love and empathy.

Questions featured in this episode:

  1. Why do you think so many of us have a broken relationship with food and our bodies?
  2. Capitalism and consumerism are both linked to our dissatisfaction with ourselves and our bodies. How do you encourage people to recognise that and make changes so that we get to decide what is good and right for us individually?
  3. It’s counter-cultural to teach and encourage people to love themselves and accept themselves as they are, particularly in the face of a society that teaches us to find fault in our bodies from a very young age. Is that something that comes naturally to you?
  4. We both encourage people to ask the question WHY? Why do we do what we do? Why do we buy what we buy? Why do we eat what we eat? Do you find that once we begin to uncover that why, it becomes simpler to start making changes?
  5. As a process, this asking why and digging deep is uncomfortable. How do you encourage people to accept that this is outside their comfort zone and move through regardless?
  6. You highlight mindful eating as a way to begin to heal our relationship with food, but what actually is it to eat more mindfully?
  7. How can we begin to eat more mindfully? What’s the first step?
  8. There is this beautiful undercurrent of awe in all you do, and that means you frame your work in the idea that every body, right now, as it is, is a miracle. What is the reaction from people when you ask them to pay attention to the miracle of their body? Particularly if they have grown up not knowing how to like their bodies?
  9. Young kids have no issues with accepting their bodies as they are, but as they get closer to puberty this changes, and suddenly they’re seeing all that’s wrong with them. Why do you think this happens?
  10. What can we do to help ourselves and our kids move through that?

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Head over to iTunes to subscribe to the show and play the episode.

Or you can listen to the show directly, simply by hitting the Play button above. Enjoy!

——

Things to Check Out After Today’s Episode:

As always, thank you for listening!

Love Slow? Support the show!