“Simply having a phone on the table or within reach keeps the conversations shallow.  None of this would be a big deal if mobile and app-based conversation were complementing rather than replacing face-to-face conversation, but that’s not the case.  In fact, so many people are turning to digital to have potentially messy and emotional conversations in a less messy and emotional way.  It may bring more calm to a relationship, sure, but it also strips the vulnerability and revelation that come from looking someone in the eye, seeing how your words land, seeing how their body responds, hearing the catch in their breath, understanding what is truly going on between you in a way no emoji chain or composed text could ever express.  That emotional, messy, hard, exhilarating, don’t-know-what’s-coming-next space is where the moments that make life most worth living lie.  Kill the space, kill the moment.  Hello, tidy matrix and numbed-out life.” ~ Jonathan Fields, How To Live A Good Life

“Not many years ago, it was access to information and movement that seemed our greatest luxury; nowadays it’s often freedom from information, the chance to sit still, that feels like the ultimate prize.  Stillness is not just an indulgence for those with enough resources – it’s a necessity for anyone who wishes to gather less visible resources.  Going nowhere is not about austerity so much as about coming closer to one’s senses.” ~ Pico Iyer, The Art of Stillness

“With machines coming to seem part of our nervous systems, while increasing their speed every season, we’ve lost our Sundays, our weekends, our nights off – our holy days, as some would have it; our bosses, junk mailers, our parents can find us wherever we are, at any time of day or night.  More and more of us feel like emergency-room physicians, permanently on call, required to heal ourselves but unable to find the prescription for all the clutter on our desk.” ~ Pico Iyer, The Art of Stillness

Wake Up When You’re Most Ready To Be Woken Up. How The ‘Smart Alarm’ Revolutionized My Morning.

Every morning, my alarm wakes me up when I am most ready to be woken up.

Getting jolted awake at the exact time you set your alarm for the night before (and snoozing 25 times because you weren’t ready to be woken up) is so yesterday.

How do I do this?

There’s an app for that.

Of all of the apps I have downloaded on my phone, it’s probably the one I value the most.

The app is called Sleep Cycle and it’s a smart alarm that uses the phone’s accelerometer to identify sleep phases by tracking movements in bed.

I have been using for 349 days now – to be exact – and have been waking more peacefully than ever before.

Here’s how it works:

Continue reading

How to Adopt Zen Habits by Embracing Technology

How to Adopt Zen Habits by Embracing Technology

“In all the practice centers in the tradition of Plum Village whenever the phone rings or the clock chimes in the dining hall, people stop everything they are doing and breathe consciously, releasing all thinking and any tension.” ~ Thich Nhat Hanh


What if you could get in the habit of clearing your mind and releasing all thinking every time the phone rang?

What if you could get in the habit of releasing all tension every time the clock chimed?

What if you got in the habit of smiling every time your alarm went off?

What if every time you got a text message, instead of immediately reading and replying, you got in the habit of stopping and taking a punctuation break?

What if every time your phone beeped, buzzed, or rang in general you got in the habit of thinking of one thing that you’re grateful for? Continue reading

“We can’t jump off bridges anymore because our iPhones will get ruined. We can’t take skinny dips in the ocean, because there’s no service on the beach and adventures aren’t real unless they’re on Instagram. Technology has doomed the spontaneity of adventure and we’re helping destroy it every time we Google, check-in, and hashtag.” ~ Jeremy Glass


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