"I think I like this little life”

28-02-2024 (07:00) - FT Trend Cult

Welcome back, everyone! Last month we covered Gen Z’s new obsession with all things mindfulness. We thought we’d follow up on that by investigating how the younger generation is prioritizing their peace through what is known as the art of slow living, and embracing their inner children. Sounds familiar? Then keep reading.

Slowly but surely

The new generation’s interest in the art of slow living is a result of the hectic lifestyle we are currently experiencing. It’s a way to pay attention to and romanticize the simple things in life. Embracing peace, disconnecting from the chaos of social media, or spending more time away from the city life is what slow living represents.

Haste makes waste

Trends focusing on “girl bosses” and “finance bros” have been around since the early 2000s. They embody capitalistic, corporate ideals where the ultimate goal is to live a lavish lifestyle. We saw it in Legally Blonde's Warner Huntington III, whose main aspiration was to become rich and successful. Spoiler alert (if you’re 23 years late to the game): He ended up unemployed. Contrary to the 2001 film, Gen Z wouldn’t see it as that bad of an ending. Instead, overworked, and underpaid zoomers fantasize about quitting and retreating to a cozy cottage in the middle of nowhere. Calm has become the new Productive, and boy oh boy isn’t that a good thing!

The IT girl of slow living

A prime example of the slow living lifestyle is the Internet’s most recent IT girl – Nara Smith. One of Gen Z’s most recent obsessions is Nara’s peaceful, almost serene, lifestyle – you might’ve seen her share her elevated pregnancy cravings or make her kids breakfast cereal from scratch (because eating store-bought is so out, apparently). She’s often described as “calm” and “soothing”, and her comment section is filled with confessions like “I want to be your child (I'm 23)”. The latter brings us to an important and highly relevant aspect of the slow living lifestyle – Gen Z’s reconnection with their inner children.

“The majority of us had to partially miss out on the joys of an offline childhood away from touchscreens”

Born with a silver [iPhone] in your mouth

The conversation surrounding everyone’s #innerchild is undeniably popular – the hashtag has been used over 1.5 million times on Instagram alone. This is because Generation Z’s upbringing is defined by a rollercoaster of world events and sudden inventions. While our parents had to use a landline, our generation grew up with smartphones. Therefore, most of us had to partially miss out on the joys of an offline childhood away from touchscreens.

Embracing your inner child

Led by nostalgia, we might buy that one thing we wanted for our seventh birthday, or learn how to do a cartwheel despite being too scared to do so in middle school. Whether it is rewatching your favorite cartoons, adding more patterns to your wardrobe, or simply experiencing life through the curiosity of a kindergartener, just like in the slow living trend it’s all about finding happiness in small things. You can become a person that your 10-year-old self would be proud of – how precious is that!

I’m just a girl!

Our team gives big thumbs up to the mindful reconnection with your inner child. It can be a beneficial tool to learn more about yourself and discover new joys, all while embracing childlike curiosity – after all, we’re just girls! The art of slow living is important too, which is why we recommend googling a few grounding practices, setting a time limit on that one app that you scroll through the most, and paying close attention to your work-life balance.

Us though, we're off to bird-watch and make mozzarella from scratch. Let us know if you have any suggestions or topics that we could write about next. See ya next month!

Yours truly, Trend Cult.