You might have noticed that there was no newsletter last week! That’s because I decided that I did actually want and need to do my annual week of Digital Detox and focus on health and wellness. I hadn’t really planned on it for this year, but was reminded shortly before my holiday by a friend just how healthy I always find my device-free week and so I decided to spontaneously log off for the week.
And it was just what I needed. To unwind, unplug, and take a step back. To spend a week being far more present than I am when I’ve got a device with me 24/7. And to concentrate solely on my health and wellness.
It was such a relaxing week! I rode my bike to the beach each morning, meditated & journaled there, and spent some time in contemplative solitude. And it was just what my overstimulated brain needed!
When I logged back in after Digital Detox week, one of the first things I came across was Google’s Wellbeing Manifesto doing the rounds on social media. It’s brilliant!
I loved seeing this and it (retroactively) reinforced my decision to take that week off. Because it’s okay to “not check email…[and]…think and rest”. There are a number of permutations of these manifestos going around and I think they are all fabulous. I’d love to think we are all living in a world where these manifestos are how we live and work!
For me, holidays are a time to focus on and health and wellness. I have more time to read, cook, do sports, and sleep. And I appreciate all of those elements in life a lot more too!
Matt Walker is THE sleep guru. He’s an English scientist and professor of neuroscience and psychology at the University of California, Berkeley and he has given some amazing and enlightening talks on how “sleep is a non-negotiable biological necessity”. This 3-minute TED Talk is an absolute must! I first heard Walker interviewed a few years ago and the quote that really struck me was about the effect of small amounts of sleep-deprivation (a mere hour!!) on our health:
“… there is a global experiment performed on 1.6 billion people across 70 countries twice a year, and it’s called daylight saving time. Now, in the spring, when we lose one hour of sleep, we see a subsequent 24-percent increase in heart attacks that following day. In the autumn, when we gain an hour of sleep, we see a 21-percent reduction in heart attacks. Isn’t that incredible? And you see exactly the same profile for car crashes, road traffic accidents, even suicide rates.” ~ Matt Walker, Sleep is your Superpower
Absolutely mind-blowing information! This really makes me want to make sure my sleep is top-notch!! Holidays are great for catching up on sleep, so now it’s about making sure I sleep well in my regular life. 😄 If you’re interested in hearing more about Walker’s findings on sleep, I also tagged him in a podcast in my newsletter on Morning Routines.
One thing I find really fascinating is what we hone in on and/or remember about multifaceted discussions. That focus often tells us something about what we need or are curious about in that moment in time. And so it was with this podcast on “Why we are all so stressed”. The element that really stuck out for me was the discussion around micro-movements. A lot of us focus on doing sports and going to the gym, but then are sedentary the other 23 hours of the day. The body is made for movement! And it’s these so-called “micro-movements” that are key. Taking the stairs, walking to the store rather than driving, taking your bike into town.
And just as I made the decision to try to increase my micro-movements, a friend of mine invited me to join her in a 10,000 steps a day challenge for September. Timely or what??! Why not join me in trying to increase your micro-movements and wellness this month? 😄
WHAT I’M READING
I read a few books while on holidays. Some were brain candy, some were beach reads, some were books I’d had on my TBR pile just waiting for the opportunity to read them in one sitting. Most were decent but not necessarily something worth recommending [sorry, this includes The Paper Palace].
My favourite read of the holiday was one I didn’t expect to like! The premise of The Thursday Murder Club is that a group of seniors at a retirement home meet weekly to “solve” cold cases together. Then a real murder happens on the grounds of the retirement home and the four Murder Club members decide to try to solve it before the police can. It was so charming and delightfully well-written! It was a really good story and the character development was wonderful. (And it would make a great choice for a book club.) When I finished it, I was hoping for more, and turns out there will be a second book coming out in 2 weeks!
What aspects of health and wellbeing are you focused on these days? I’d love to know what has attracted your energy lately.
I absolutely love September and that Back to School feeling!! New notebooks, new routines, new energy to start new projects. It’s a great time to focus on healthy habits and wellbeing. It always feels a bit like a new year once school starts up again, maybe even more so than in January. Hope you get a burst of new energy and new mojo too!
Hope you are starting this new month with health and wellness. ♥
Have a wonderful weekend.
P.S. It’s my dad’s birthday today, so an extra big happy birthday newsletter hug to my wonderful dad!!