When was the last time you did nothing for 10 minutes? Not work, no sports, not talk, not reminisce about the past or plan for the future. Just do nothing at all. Peace. Only available to few, but o so beneficial: ‘It leads to peace of mind and wellbeing, greater focus and creativity, and better relationships.’
Email, Facebook, Twitter, Netflix, HBO: we are surrounded by mass media that require continuous attention. When waiting for the train, people staring at a screen surround you. We are available anytime, anywhere and expect the same from others. As a result we lose ‘the now’. In the book Present Shock media expert Douglas Rushkoff describes this phenomenon: ‘Mobile notifications put people in a state of perpetual emergency interruption - similar to what 911 operators and air traffic controllers experienced back in the '70s and '80s.’
Always being ‘on’ creates unrest. It disrupts concentration and creates stress (‘I still have an app to send’). Fortunately, there is something you can do: turn off automatic notifications and use applications such as Freedom, where you can temporarily but completely disconnect from the Internet. A slightly less rigorous solution is Rescue Time, where you can monitor the time spent on specific applications (e.g. Facebook). With these kinds of useful tools you finally get some peace! Right?
Reducing the stimuli in your environment is a good start, but how do you create peace in your head? In this blog we previously pleaded for mindfulness, simply because it has been proven effective. But even if you are convinced of its effectiveness, it can be difficult to integrate mindfulness into your daily life. This is why Andy Puddicombe developed a program called Headspace laying the foundation in only 10 minutes per day.
Headspace is an online training program for the brain. It is a modern and user-friendly method to be ‘in the here and now’; to get away from your everyday worries. With Headspace you learn to become aware. You cannot change the facts (‘I have a toothache’), but you can change the way you deal with it (‘I accept that I have a toothache’).
‘Andy Puddicombe is doing for meditation what Jamie Oliver has done for food,’ according to the New York Times. An apt comparison, because Headspace makes meditation easy, accessible and down to Earth. The program helps in several ways, such as: reducing worry, having less stress, laughing more, focussing better, and eating, listening and sleeping better. For those who still have doubts: for 10 days you can try Headspace for free.
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