InterNational Downshifting Week

InterNational Downshifting Week – Saturday 23rd to Friday 29th April 2011

long-bottom-banner-idw-jpeg1 By Michael Smith (Veshengro)

InterNational Downshifting Week is held this year from Saturday 23rd to Friday 29th April 2011 so you still have a few days to get involved.

It exists to help you find a better work life balance and to show you how to give a positive embrace to living with less and it encourages you to wear your downshifting hat with pride by pulling back from mass consumerism, so you hold onto more of your hard-earned cash.

InterNational Downshifting Week can also have a powerful impact on your mental health and well-being, your relationships with family and friends.

OK, So How ‘Do’ You Downshift?

Downshifting to a better work life balance should be a slow and well-considered affair and for the best results and long-lasting effects, the process should consist of a gentle migration and despite all the good things you read on the Internet and elsewhere proclaiming its endless benefits, if you do it all overnight, it might just be the kiss of death to a very good plan.

By taking things at a digestible pace, you’ll easily be able to find your ‘comfort level’ of downshift, which is very important. What suits one person, might be another’s living nightmare!

Above all, the process should be done with pride. Pulling back from a consumerist lifestyle will present you with physical and mental obstacles, all of which can be overcome if you have a positive embrace of living with less.

Remember, the more money you spend, the more time you have to be out there earning it and the less time you get to spend with the ones you love - that’s it in a nutshell.

Downshifting can be done with regards to work and life balance but also in order to tread more lightly on the Planet. Therefore it is very much a green thing and one that should be carefully considered.

What can this mean in practice?

It can mean staying in and cooking your own food rather than going out to a restaurant. Aside from saving money you will also know how the food was prepared and by who and how clean everything has been.

It can mean shifting from two cars to just one and using Shank's pony more or the iron steed, the trusted – and often rusted – bicycle to get about and public transport for the longer journeys.

It can mean making do with the things that we have and which work fine rather than having to “upgrade” to the latest and shiniest new toy and gadget, and a lot more. In a way you can make it what you want it to be.

And don't do it just for a week... Do it from now on for good.

© 2011