Mindfulness is so hot right now
I recently picked up a copy of the Times special edition on mindfulness. It's full of helpful articles on different ways to be mindful in your life and it explores many of the health and spiritual benefits of being in the now. MacLean's has written about mindfulness in the classroom and of course there's a slew of celebrities that have hopped on the mindfulness bandwagon.
I'm glad to see a cultural shift here in North America towards slowing life down. I can't see any real cons to taking note of the present more, and embracing the now. I spent my twenties in a whirlwind, doing this, taking on that, oftentimes wearing myself out. I know that's a part of being young, but I've gradually realized that if I really want to do things well, I have to do fewer things. Much like shopping on Either/Or, I'm trying to focus on efforts that produce quality things and experiences. Call it the shift from fast living to slow living.
And just like in life's journey to slow down, the journey to slow fashion is full of road blocks, hurdles and detours. There are different ways of going about it, and all of the labels I carry in the shop are approaching sustainability and ethical manufacturing from different angles.
One of my favourite bloggers, Kate Arends of Wit&Delight, has often written about her own struggle to calm her mind. It's doubly hard in this age of social media when we're so used to being interrupted every few minutes by a tweet or a text. She writes about her social-media-free weekend here, and I hope it inspires you to try it out yourself.
Reading the Times' publication also got me thinking about how the products we buy in our lives can be designed and made to support our efforts to slow down and be in the moment. Essential oil diffusers, yoga mats, apps and yes, even clothing. A while back I learned of Vyayama (pronounced 'vai-ah'mah', a 3,000-year-old sanskrit word meaning "to move" and "to tame the inner breath") a natural alternative to synthetic yoga apparel. It designs and manufactures modern athletic gear for the mindful soul and is the first label to use tencel, a sustainable fabric regenerated from wood cellulose, in athletic apparel.
You can scoff at me, but the power of a uniform is indisputable. From police officers to nurse scrubs and yoga gear, putting on clothing made for a specific task can help put you in the right frame of mind to get started. Call it dressing mindfully. I'll be honest, the idea of wearing my groovy Daub + Design exercise pants gives me that extra boost I need to get myself to the gym at lunch, and these beautiful athletic pieces by Vyayama would do the same.
I think that your mindful practice should include dressing thoughtfully, and it's great to see more labels popping up that can help you do just that. And if getting your yoga uniform on isn't enough, I highly recommend you check out Yoga with Adrienne. She's an adorable Texan who you'll want to immediately befriend on the mat. Namaste.