Would You Like To Slow Down The Ageing Process?
There is much to be said for taking it slow. The Slow Movement has developed as a counter to the current culture of fast food and mass production, which is particularly evident within the fashion industry. This culture sees food, clothing and even travel as just ‘things’ which much be attained as soon as possible, without regard necessarily for how they are produced and the impact they will have on others. ‘Slow’ is about finding the connections in any experience to allow us to savour its qualities. Different groups have used the SLOW acronym to highlight various issues.
For example, the slow food movement has used it to mean:
S = Sustainable (not having an impact)
L = Local (not someone else’s patch)
O = Organic (not mass produced)
W = Whole (not processed)
What is Slow?
Each of the SLOW concepts above are a practical way to foster connectedness between what is being produced and what we are eating. However, the same principles can also be applied to our own lives. We don’t expect time to stand still, but we know time can get away on us over days, weeks and even years. Slow is about taking our time (back).
However, we cannot expect that enjoyable and fulfilling lives will merely come from longer ones.
Slow ageing, therefore, has the mutual goals of disease prevention and maintaining structure, function and quality of life.
These aims are distinct from anti-ageing practices, which propose to intervene in the process of ageing, with the goal of extending lifespan. It is reasonable to have expectations that technology and medicine will do this for us as over the last hundred years, lives have become healthier and longer, and more advances are being made in our lifetime. But the notion that a single pill or diet may control ageing is naïve; ageing is a complex change over many years determined by environmental, behavioural, cultural, socioeconomic, as well as biological factors.
As an analogy, it is not possible to contain the entire nutrient content of an apple in a tablet! While it may be chemically identical, it does not have the crunch of the first bite, the shine of the skin or the joy of picking it fresh from a tree. In the same way, ‘slow’ health and ageing allow us to take rational steps to better support structure and function and maintain quality. Rather than merely being passengers in our bodies, we can engage in our lives and our environment, and start to make positive and informed choices about things they can do today with tomorrow in mind.
How can I slow down?
Slow means not giving control of your choices over to anyone else and puts you in control of your decisions and their consequences.
There are many different ways to slow down, and what suits one person’s life and situation may not suit another’s. However, in common to them all are seven principles. In the book, Fast Living, Slow Ageing, we will use these principles to illustrate some of the opportunities of slow ageing and how these can extend our health span. These principles are also starting point to guide policymakers, funders and the healthcare system.
Step 1: Slow solutions involve awareness and engagement
Step 2: Slow solutions have clear and realistic goals
Step 3: Slow solutions eliminate the negative
Step 4: Slow solutions are sustainable in the long-term
Step 5: Slow solutions are not exclusive
Step 6: Slow solutions need support
Step 7: Slow solutions is doing what’s right for you
So who is going to follow the seven steps and slow down the ageing process?
Carolyn (Caz) Rowland is a fashion designer, model, lifestyle blogger and professional Image Stylist. Caz is also a qualified NLP Master Therapist, Advanced Practitioner of Matrix Therapies, Time Line Therapist, Practitioner of Hypnotherapy, has a Diploma for Business and Life Coaching. Caz is happily married to her husband Simon, and raised four beautiful children, who are now young adults and a teenager.