Can slow living make us lonely?

Slow living has changed my life for the better in so many different ways, and somewhat surprisingly, one of the major benefits I’ve experienced from learning to slow down is stronger relationships.

On the whole I’m able to be more present and emotionally available to my family, I’m a better listener, and when I’m spending time with people I care about I try to show all the way up. (That I even know what it feels like to show all the way up is a huge shift from the frazzled and distracted person I used to be).

Over the past few years slow living has also helped me form new friendships, albeit slowly. Where Past Brooke allowed comparison or negative self-talk get in the way of real connection, I now have a handful of tools that I use to meet new people and to (usually) help me move through the awkwardness that is making friends as an adult.

As an introvert I’m by no means a fan of networking events or small talk, but I have developed a self-awareness that helps a lot. So when I received an email from today’s guest, the lovely and open-hearted Nancy, I knew this needed to be a conversation we had together on the podcast.

Nancy has recently moved from the UK to Kuala Lumpur with her family, and is afraid that her introversion, combined with her desire to live a ‘slow life’ is holding her back from making friends.

I could see a LOT of me in Nancy’s question, and we have a fantastic conversation about why we struggle with connection and what relationship that struggle has to deeper issues of self-worth, guilt and shame.

I share some of the practical techniques I’ve used over the past six months of living in a new place that have helped me slowly find and connect with like-minded people, even on those days where going out to meet new people feels too much.

To bring another perspective in to the conversation, I also wanted to bring in my friend Cait Flanders, and she joins me in the second half of the episode. Cait and I talk about making friends online, the importance of getting comfortable with awkwardness and letting go of expectations when meeting new people.

This is a really warm, honest and reflective conversation that I absolutely loved. Nancy showed all the way up for it, and we’re all rewarded with an honest chat about making friends as an adult, with some additional insights given for those of us who are on the more introverted side of the spectrum.

Enjoy!

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As always, thank you for listening!

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