Happy New Year!
Now that the celebrations are over and you’re making plans for the year ahead, I’d like to invite you to join me at a weekend retreat by the sea this coming May. I’m really pleased to have been invited to design and run “NOT a Digital Detox: How to feel better without logging off”, a chance to reflect on our online lives and our place in nature. It takes place at the wonderful Othona Community in West Dorset, UK over the weekend of Fri 11 May – Sun 13 May 2018. £140 for two nights full board. Bursaries available. See the website for full information.
I attended a retreat at Othona a couple of years ago and really enjoyed my stay there. It’s friendly, secluded, and just a short walk from the sea. It has a long tradition of being a contemplative space and is the perfect place to gather and think together about how to live with the digital today. Find out more about Othona.
This retreat also, it seems, mirrors the current zeitgeist! Some time after we had completed our planning, the New York Times ran a piece about the West Coast Esalen Community taking a similar approach. I’ve visited Esalen several times and always loved it, but it did occasionally come over as fairly anti-technology. However, it now has a new approach and is working directly with Silicon Valley to address the challenges of the digital life. The winds are changing, friends!
Please note that you will not be asked to leave your kit at home because this isn’t a detox. It’s more like a balancing.
I’d be very grateful if you would share this announcement with your friends and colleagues to help spread the word.
Check out these photos of Othona and read on for the Catalogue entry.
Continue reading Come to the first Digital Wellbeing Retreat- “NOT a Digital Detox: How to feel better without logging off”
Excerpt from Nature and Wellbeing in the Digital Age: How to feel better without logging off, by Sue Thomas. Paperback and Kindle. Buy Now.
Perhaps you have noticed that digital guilt has become the media’s favourite way to fill an empty column or two? The smallest mention of the dangers of technology is guaranteed to make us shift uneasily as we scroll through our phones and tablets.
Remarks like this, for example, can really sting when you’re doing your best just to get through the day:
‘Reading Thoreau by the fire, fishing for trout, and playing chess over blackberry wine are just some of the pleasures I’ve found since I turned my back on tech’
wrote digital detoxer Mark Boyle.[i] Ouch! That makes me feel so inadequate, with my phone always in my pocket!
Actually, though, it doesn’t have to be like that. Continue reading Choose more nature, not less technology
I’m excited to be invited as a Visiting Professor this May at James Cook University, Singapore. As part of my work there I will present a public lecture on Thursday, 7pm 18 May 2017. If you’re in Singapore then and would like to come along, please follow the link below to the University website.
Living well with nature in a wired world: an introduction to technobiophilia
Do you worry that wired life is taking you away from nature? You may be surprised to learn that you could be getting your daily dose of the natural world through your screensaver, or in virtual reality, or simply by ‘liking’ pictures of sunsets on Facebook. This talk explains the concept of biophilia, the deep genetic memory of our early evolution in the ancient wild, and introduces the concept of technobiophilia. Dr Thomas explains how our ancestral attraction to nature can soothe our connected lives and help us to feel better without logging off.