Savor The Moment With Inspiring Slow Living Quotes

slow living quotes

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On my journey to simplicity, I’ve found that inspirational slow living quotes boost my confidence in pursuing a slower lifestyle. I know that I don’t need permission to stop the daily rat race and just “be,” but, let’s be honest, we all need a little validation and encouragement from time to time.

The quotes I’ve compiled here are powerful motivators in my life from big names as old as Aristotle and as current as Greg McKeown. Slow living is a revolutionary movement that has been around a lot longer than we give it credit for, and it has the power to change our lives for the better if we let it.

ryans tiny house

Hi, I’m Ryan

My years of living simply and slowly have taught me that I can only value what matters most by letting go of the things that aren’t truly important. A life of less has brought me more fulfillment than a life stuffed with the non-vital ever did.

ryan mitchell simple living expert

Inspirational Slow Living Quotes To Live By

Inspirational Slow Living Quotes

“Slow down, you’re doing fine, you can’t be everything you wanna be before your time.”

~ Billy Joel, lyrics from “Vienna”

“There is more to life than increasing its speed.”

~ Mahatma Gandhi

“Slow living isn’t about determining how little we can live with — it’s about working out what we simply can’t live without.”

~ Nathan Williams, The Kinfolk Home

“Anything worth doing is worth doing slowly.”

~ Mae West

“The slow philosophy is not about doing everything in tortoise mode. It’s less about the speed and more about investing the right amount of time and attention in the problem so you solve it.”

~ Carl Honoré

“Slow living is a curious mix of being prepared and being prepared to let go. Caring more and caring less. Saying yes and saying no. Being present and walking away. Doing the important things and forgetting those that aren’t.”

~ Brooke McAlary, Slow

“There is only today, with holes in our pockets, with time spilling out. We cannot keep it for tomorrow.”

~ Erin Loechner, Chasing Slow

“Living Slow is not about living like a snail. It means doing everything at the right speed — fast, slow, or whatever pace delivers the best results.”

~ Carl Honoré

“Smile, breathe, and go slowly.”

~ Thich Nhat Hanh

“Being slow means that you control the rhythms of your own life. You decide how fast you have to go in any given context. If today I want to go fast, I go fast; if tomorrow I want to go slow, I go slow. What we are fighting for is the right to determine our own tempos.”

~ Carlo Petrini

“Slow down. Life is crossing the road.”

~ Debasish Mridha

“Being in a hurry does not slow down time.”

~ Mokokoma Mokhonoana

“The way of the Essentialist means living by design, not by default.”

~ Greg McKeown, Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less

living an analog life

Slow Living Quotes About Busyness

Slow Living Quotes About Busyness

“. . . slow living is not about living your life in slow motion; it’s about doing everything at the right speed and pacing instead of rushing. By that same logic, slow living is not about losing time by going slowly; it’s about gaining time by doing the things that are most important to you.”

~ Kayleigh Dray

“. . . to be slow means that you govern the rhythms of your life. You are in control of deciding how fast you have to go.”

~ Carlo Petrini

“Besides the noble art of getting things done, there is the noble art of leaving things undone. The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of non-essentials.”

~ Lin Yutang, The Importance of Living

“Slowing down is sometimes the best way to speed up.”

~ Mike Vance

“We’re a species that rushes through everything, then complains that time flies.”

~ Steve Maraboli

“Doing a huge number of things doesn’t mean you’re getting anything meaningful done.”

~ Leo Babauta, The Power of Less

“We need, above all things, to slow down and get ourselves to amble through life instead of to rush through it.”

~ Alan Watts

“We need to learn the slow ‘yes’ and the quick ‘no.'”

~ Tom Friel

“Real luxury is not working like a maniac to take an expensive vacation — it is living a life you enjoy every day.”

~ Kathy Gottberg

“It takes courage to say yes to rest and play in a culture where exhaustion is seen as a status symbol.”

~ Brené Brown

“We’re so caught up in trying to do everything, experience all the essential things, not miss out on anything important … Life is better when we don’t try to do everything. Learn to enjoy the slice of life you experience, and life turns out to be wonderful.”

~ Leo Babauta

battle of the busy schedule

Slow Living Quotes About Simplicity

Slow Living Quotes About Simplicity

“Hygge is humble and slow. It is choosing rustic over new, simple over posh, and ambience over excitement. In many ways, hygge might be the Danish cousin to slow and simple living.”

~ Meik Wiking, The Little Book of Hygge

“Simplicity boils down to two steps: Identify the essential. Eliminate the rest.”

~ Leo Babauta

“The idea of the modern has been superseded; the challenge today is to return to the small scale, the handmade, to local distribution — because today what we call ‘modern’ is out of date.”

~ Carlo Petrini

“The foundation of slow remains the same: a return to high-quality basics, a re-evaluation of the largely unnecessary ‘must haves’ of modern life, and a focus on going small, local, and community based.”

~ Brooke McAlary

“Live simply so that others may simply live.”

~ Mahatma Gandhi

“Take refuge in simple life! You will find three treasures there: Healthy body, peaceful mind, and a life away from ambitious fools!”

~ Mehmet Murat ildan

“A person who knows who they are lives a simple life by eliminating from their orbit anything that does not align with his or her overriding purpose and values.”

~ Kilroy J. Oldster

“When the living gets unburdened with needs and desires, the life becomes simple and easy to carry.”

~ Shashi

“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”

~ Leonardo Da Vinci

“If one’s life is simple, contentment has to come. Simplicity is extremely important for happiness. Having few desires, feeling satisfied with what you have, is very vital: satisfaction with just enough food, clothing, and shelter to protect yourself from the elements.”

~ Dalai Lama

“Simplicity is the glory of expression.”

~ Walt Whitman

“It is always the simple that produces the marvelous.”

~ Amelia Barr

“As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler; solitude will not be solitude, poverty will not be poverty, nor weakness weakness.”

~ Henry David Thoreau

simple living

Slow Living Quotes About Mindfulness And Self-Awareness

Slow Living Quotes About Mindfulness

“Slow living provides an opportunity to step back, pay attention, and question the ways we use technology, to recalibrate our relationship with the constantly switched-on, logged-in world.”

~ Brooke McAlary, SLOW

“Shifting the mind into lower gear can bring better health, inner calm, enhanced concentration and the ability to think more creatively.”

~ Carl Honoré, In Praise of Slowness: Challenging the Cult of Speed

“Wisdom is not something we have to strive to acquire. Rather, it arises naturally as we slow down and notice what is already there.”

~ Haemin Sunim

“When we rush, we skim the surface, and fail to make real connections with the world or other people.”

~ Carl Honoré, In Praise of Slowness: Challenging the Cult of Speed

“We need to build a pause into our decision making and be more considered — from goods, media, marketing, and messages, to unwanted advice and opinions, which sometimes are our own.”

~ Natalie Walton, Still: The Slow Home

“Do not do more today than you can completely recover from today. Do not do more this week than you can completely recover from this week.”

~ Greg McKeown, Effortless: Make It Easier to Do What Matters Most

“We may feel productive when we’re constantly switching between things, constantly doing something, but in all honesty, we’re not. We’re just distracted.”

~ Leo Babauta

“When we are calm, unhurried, and free from stress and distractions, the brain slips into a richer, more nuanced mode of thought. Some call this slow thinking, and the best minds have always understood its power.”

~ Carl Honoré

“When things happen too fast, nobody can be certain about anything, about anything at all, not even about himself.”

~ Milan Kundera

“Mindfulness is a state of mind you can only get to if you slow down.”

~ Geir Berthelsen

“By abolishing the chance of being bored, we have lost the time we used to have to think and process.”

~ Greg McKeown, Essentialism

social media break

Slow Living Quotes About Savoring Life

Slow Living Quotes About Savoring Life

“Slow living is all about creating time and space and energy for the things that matter most to us in life, so ask yourself what you stand to gain.”

~ Brooke McAlary

“Slow living is less of a style and more a deeply personal mentality.”

~ Nathan Williams, The Kinfolk Home

“Be a curator of your life. Slowly cut things out until you’re left only with what you love, with what’s necessary, with what makes you happy.”

~ Leo Babauta, The Effortless Life

“The central tenet of the slow philosophy is taking the time to do things properly, and thereby enjoy them more.”

~ Carl Honoré, In Praise of Slowness

“Slow down in your pursuit of happiness and it’s more likely to catch up with you.”

~ Ernie J. Zelinski

“It is only when there is no goal and no rush that the human senses are fully open to receive the world.”

~ Alan Watts

“Slow living is about intention, spending more time on things that are important and less on things that aren’t.”

~ Brooke McAlary

“Slow down and enjoy life. It’s not only the scenery you miss by going too fast — you also miss the sense of where you are going and why.”

~ Eddie Cantor

“There is no hurry, and in a way there is no future. It is all here — so take it easy, take your time, and get acquainted with it.”

~ Alan Watts

“When I slow down, I can dive deeper — and that’s how I prefer to live.”

~ Cait Flanders

“Find ecstasy in life; the mere sense of living is joy enough.”

~ Emily Dickinson

“Slow down. Find peace in little moments. Learn what you love, fill your life with it, and watch yourself come alive.”

~ Sonya Matejko

simple living formula

Slow Living Quotes About Materialism

Slow Living Quotes About Materialism

“The best things in life aren’t things.”

~ Art Buchwald

“Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”

~ William Morris

“The question of what you want to own is actually the question of how you want to live your life.”

~ Marie Kondo

“Ask anyone what makes them truly happy, and they wont say their stuff.”

~ Peter Walsh, Lighten Up

“The cost of a thing is the amount of life which is required to be exchanged for it.”

~ Henry David Thoreau

“I think all of us, weary in our suburban coffee shops, amassing everything my friends in Ethiopia need but having nothing they want. They have joy. Gratitude. Love. Community. Forgiveness. We have wicker basket organizers, SUVs, and backyard fire pits.”

~ Erin Loechner, Chasing Slow

“While you are alive, collect moments not things, earn respect not money, and enjoy love not luxuries.”

~ Aarti Khurana

“Once you learn to detach happiness from acquiring and owning things you can focus on what truly makes you happy — and actually achieve that.”

~ Peter Walsh, Lighten Up

“Many a man thinks he is buying pleasure, when he is really selling himself to it.”

~ Benjamin Franklin

“Material goods rarely alter our levels of happiness, unlike emotional experience. Having can never replace being.”

~ Ilsa Crawford

“There are two ways to be rich: One is by acquiring much, and the other is by desiring little.”

~ Jackie French Koller

the purpose of stuff

Slow Living Quotes About Nature

Slow Living Quotes About Nature

“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.”

~ Lao Tzu

“Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.”

~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

“I was rich, if not in money, in sunny hours and summer days, and spent them lavishly; nor do I regret that I did not waste more of them in the workshop or at the teacher’s desk.”

~ Henry David Thoreau

“Ask a bird how to fly, and it might tell you to remove the weight from your wings.”

~ Erin Loechner

“Give me a quiet life, give me trees, the wind through them, give me a sea and the song it sings. Give me heartbeats shared with those I love, give me peace and a long deep sleep.”

~ Tyler Knott Gregson

“The troubles of modern life come from being divorced from nature.”

~ Isaac Asimov

“The great benefit of slowing down is reclaiming the time and tranquility to make meaningful connections — with people, with culture, with work, with nature, with our own bodies and minds.”

~ Carl Honoré

downshifting lifestyle

Famous Slow Living Quotes Throughout History

Slow Living Quotes Throughout History

“The secret of happiness, you see, is not found in seeking more, but in developing the capacity to enjoy less.”

~ Plato

“The things that matter most should never be at the mercy of the things that matter least.”

~ Goethe

“It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.”

~ Confucius

“Wisely and slow. They stumble that run fast.”

~ Shakespeare

“Never discourage anyone who continually makes progress, no matter how slow.”

~ Plato

“The first principle of all action is leisure.”

~ Aristotle

“The trees that are slow to grow bear the best fruit.”

~ Moliere

“Beware the barrenness of a busy life.”

~ Socrates

minimalist book reviews

How Can You Use Slow Living Quotes For Daily Inspiration?

Slow Living Quotes For Daily Inspiration

It’s simple, really: pick five to 10 quotes from this list that inspired you the most, and write them down. Use post-its or notecards or print them out on pretty paper and put them in a frame.

Whatever way you choose, posting these slow living quotes around your home or office will give an instant boost of slow living inspiration to your everyday life.

If some of these quotes sparked your interest in reading more about the slow living movement, I’ve got a full list of slow living book recs, and I’ll add a few here that I have found particularly helpful.

Slow Living Books For Further Inspiration

destination simple

Destination Simple

by Brooke McAlary



by Greg McKeown



by Greg McKeown

in praise of slowness

In Praise of Slowness

by Carl Honoré

the kinfolk home

The Kinfolk Home

by Nathan Williams

the power of less

The Power of Less

by Leo Babauta



by Henry David Thoreau

the things you can see only when you slow down

The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down

by Haemin Sunim

an edited life

An Edited Life

by Anna Newton

Your Turn!

  • What slow living quote has made the most difference in your life?
  • Where do you go for slow living inspiration?

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