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Unplug
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Take a deep breath, slow down to navigate into a richer more fulfilling life.
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Meditation -- The New SoulCycle

Meditation -- The New SoulCycle | Unplug | Scoop.it
The country’s sleekest and most convenient meditation studio just opened in Los Angeles.
Susan Taylor's insight:

Whether it's losing baby weight; giving traders an edge on the market; or winning the Super Bowl, the "name of the magic pill" is meditation.


And now it's a big hit for "plugged-in, stressed-out millenials, who gather in groups of up to 52 people in the service of quieting an overactive mind".

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Signs You Need To Unplug

Signs You Need To Unplug | Unplug | Scoop.it
Are you attached to your digital devices? If the thought of being disconnected makes you sweat, you're not alone.
Susan Taylor's insight:

The American population is attached to its digital devices.  Are you one of them?


This Third Metric blog shares 19 signs that it's time to unplug.  Here are just a few:


  1. You experience Phone Panic
  2. You have no idea how to get to basic locations without Google Maps
  3. Your device has a spot next to your pillow
  4. LOL and hashtag are part of your vocabulary
  5. You text someone who is in the same room
  6. When you go to the bathroom, so does your phone
  7. You Instagram more food than you eat
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5 Steps to Setting Boundaries with Your Devices

5 Steps to Setting Boundaries with Your Devices | Unplug | Scoop.it
If you're adept at thumbing an iPhone in one hand and Blackberry in the other like a gunslinger in the Old West, time to take steps to wean yourself off tech.
Susan Taylor's insight:

It's "time to take steps to wean yourself off tech."  Here are 5 great suggestions from Ellen Lee of CNBC.com:


  1. Tell time the old fashioned way.  Wear a watch.  Get a non-digital clock. (Do they even exist any more?)
  2. No more smartphones in the bathroom.  Seriously!
  3. Schedule a tech break each and every day.  Just do it!
  4. Disable notifications.  No more buzzes, bells or beeps.
  5. Give SnapChat a rest and carry a journal to record some of your experiences.
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Schedule Yourself In for an Appointment

Schedule Yourself In for an Appointment | Unplug | Scoop.it
There are steps you can take that will bring back that work life balance you’re looking for. It will take some planning and discipline, but you really can do it all.
Susan Taylor's insight:

In today’s busy world, it feels as if spending more and more time married to our work is something we don't necessarily choose -- but instead something that is demanded of us.

 

Most of us have family and friends, but we we don't spend the quality time with them that we'd like. Yet with some planning and discipline, there are steps you can take to bring back some of the balance you crave. 

 

So schedule yourself in for an appointment and consider these suggestions from Project Eve.

 

(1) Put exercise on your list

(2) Limit the time you spend working at home

(3) Allow time for your hobbies

(4) Unplug yourself

(5) Schedule a social outlet

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Spa Travel Trends for 2014

Spa Travel Trends for 2014 | Unplug | Scoop.it
Health and Fitness Travel has created their exclusive Fusion Fitness programmes with spa hotels for clients needing this tailored approach.
Susan Taylor's insight:

I hate to say it, but the New Year is just around the corner.  And as you consider those resolutions, including how you will allow more time in your life for YOU, consider some of the hottest new spa travel trends for 2014:

 

  • Personalized Wellness Spas are now using a more customized approach
  • Medi-Spas are offering treatment for a variety of conditions by specialized doctors
  • Mental Restoration Spas are teaching about ways to lower stress and renew the mind and body
  • Detox & Weight-Loss Spas are educating about healthier eating patterns that restore and replenish the body
  • Fitness Spas are integrating hot, new fitness crazes into their programs
  • Knowledge Spas offer wisdom on wellness that is shared in a way that can be incorporated into daily life
  • Nature Spas offer programs to reconnect with Nature and the great outdoors
  • Wellness Spas are now incorporating different cultures into their programs
  • Family Spas, where parents are encouraged to bring their children, are becoming increasingly popular
  • Meditation Spas are now using a mindfulness approach towards mental balance and happiness
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Choose Experiences that Positively Retrain Your Brain

Choose Experiences that Positively Retrain Your Brain | Unplug | Scoop.it
I often hear people say, "I'm the kind of person who…" or, "I'm not a people person.” These seemingly off-the-cuff comments suggest they’re resigned to not changing their self-perception – regardless (Seek Experiences That Positively Reshape Your ...
Susan Taylor's insight:

Dr. Richard Davidson suggests that "using our experiences to positively shift our self-perception" will retrain your brain.

 

Did you know that playing just 2 hours of a video game can structurally change your brain?  Imagine that!  Just 2 hours with a joystick can actually change the structure of your brain.  This "underscores how extraordinarily dynamic our brains are, constantly being shaped this way and that."  And it happens so fast.  Studies show that an average adult generates 5,000 to 10,000 new brain cells every single day.

 

Most people are not very willing to shift their worldview.  And most often, we are unconscious of how our brain is being shaped by the forces around us. But in knowing that the brain changes in response to our experiences, actions and relationships, we can take advantage of this knowledge and "actually play a more intentional role in shaping our own brains in ways that may be heath promoting and in ways that can cultivate well-being".

 

 

 

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High School Students Begin & End Each Day with Meditation

High School Students Begin & End Each Day with Meditation | Unplug | Scoop.it
'Mindful Moments' Program Has High School Students Begin And End Each Day ...
Susan Taylor's insight:

A high school in Baltimore, Maryland is now making mindfulness a central part of students' lives by beginning and ending each day with meditation

 

Patterson High School has developed a Mindful Moment program with the goal to help students and teachers release stress and enhance focus.  This is all in an effort to create a better learning environment for everyone.  Faculty and kids engage in a 15-minute contemplative exercise at the start and end of each day.  There is a mindfulness room available for students to use throughout the day which is also open before and after school. 

 

Consciously practicing mindfulness in schools has been shown to reduce stress and increase happiness in students as well as fight teacher burnout.  It has also been linked to "increased brain activity in the regions associated with positive emotions."

 

Way to go Patterson High!

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Loneliness: More Dangerous Than We Thought

Loneliness: More Dangerous Than We Thought | Unplug | Scoop.it
Susan Taylor's insight:

Our continuous infatuation with social media has been said to cause more loneliness.  We've also learned that "loneliness is an equal-opportunity emotion".  It can affect people regardless of whether they are in a real relationship or not. 


But can loneliness actually kill you? 


According to recent research, loneliness is not only extremely toxic to the body; it can "increase an older person's chance of premature death by 14%". 

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The Joys & Challenges of Unplugging

The Joys & Challenges of Unplugging | Unplug | Scoop.it
Choosing to temporarily turn off our devices disconnects us from our habits of overstimulation, which for some has become a powerful addiction that consumes waking hours and distracts us from being involved in whatever is happening in the present moment.
Susan Taylor's insight:

Informed.  Entertained.  Connected.


Overwhelmed.  Distracted.  Exhausted.


Your digital devices bring you pleasure.  Your digital devices bring you distress.  And freeing yourself "from sensory overload involves the difficult but rewarding practice of unplugging." 


BUT HOW????  This blog shares some great and practical ways to unplug.

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Information Technology Burnout

Information Technology Burnout | Unplug | Scoop.it
Susan Taylor's insight:

A growing emphasis has been placed on IT professionals to help businesses compete, grow and thrive.  Great news for Information Technology, right?

 

Not for the 73% in the UK who are considering leaving their job due to work-related stress and the impact that is having on their health and relationships.

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If Life Feels Like a Battlefield, Mindfulness Can Help

If Life Feels Like a Battlefield, Mindfulness Can Help | Unplug | Scoop.it
With mindfulness courses, you will learn to identify the internal struggles and you apply a different way of relating to them.

Via Brenda Bentley
Susan Taylor's insight:

You start with the WHY's...Why me? Why now? Why is all of this happening?  You move to the WHEN's...When will things get better?  When will things be different?  When will it all end?  "Wrestling with our thoughts and feelings can be likened to a war within ourselves."

 

So if life feels like a battlefield, mindfulness can help you to get out of your own way.  Through mindfulness, you can learn to observe your thoughts differently.  And in doing so, it becomes easier to change the relationship you have with those thoughts. 

 

It's true that mindfulness practice is not some miraculous quick fix.  Yet over time, "you will learn to identify the internal struggles – the thoughts, language, feelings and strategies you currently use and apply a different way of relating to them."

 

Instead of fighting your own personal war, why not instead become the skillful observer of it?

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Millennial Women Burn Out Early

Millennial Women Burn Out Early | Unplug | Scoop.it
Share business ideas, small business news and social media tips with Project Eve's community of women in business and entrepreneurs. (RT @TedCurtin: Why Life Balance is Critical!
Susan Taylor's insight:

Are you a Millennial Woman?  If so, there are some things you need to know about early burn-out.

 

If you want to avoid burn-out, it's going to require some self-care, along with continually redefining your goals and evaluating your meaning of success.  So what does this mean?

 

It means that you need to learn to incorporate relaxation into your day in order to avoid reaching the breaking point.  Millenial women need "to learn that life is a marathon, not a sprint." 

 

And it seems that men are more capable of doing this than women. Research shows that males spend more time taking care of their personal well-being.  "They are 25% more likely to take breaks for personal activities, 35% more likely to take breaks for relaxing, 7% more likely to take time out to go for a walk and 5% more likely to make time to go out for lunch".

 

So take a lesson from this research and your male counterpart.  Take a break...relax...and go out for a walk.

 

 

 

 

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The 8 Red Flags of a Toxic Relationship

The 8 Red Flags of a Toxic Relationship | Unplug | Scoop.it
You're never going to get along with everyone 100 percent of the time. Whether you're dealing with friends, family members, or partne...
Susan Taylor's insight:

We can't get along with everyone all of the time, but when a relationship wreaks havoc on your happiness over and over again, you may very well be in a toxic relationship

 

Watch out for these 8 red flags:

 

  1. You constantly give while the other person constantly takes
  2. You receive repetitive verbal abuse from the other person
  3. Your values are not accepted but instead mocked by the other person
  4. You are made to feel bad about yourself by the other person
  5. You feel eternally beholden to the other person -- even grateful that they are putting up with you
  6. The other person tends to bring out the worst in you
  7. The other person has no respect for your other relationships
  8. Each person shows interest in the other only when "high expectations" are met

 

If you are at odds with one another more than 50% of the time, you may have a toxic relationship on your hands.  If you believe that to be the case, it's best to end the relationship -- as challenging as that may be for you.  And the sooner the better.

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Ditch Work-Life Balance

Ditch Work-Life Balance | Unplug | Scoop.it
Programmers - who are known to sleep under their desks, wear pajamas all day, and code for 16 hours straight without standing up - have long been pushing against workplace mores.

Via sfMediaProf
Susan Taylor's insight:

At a recent conference in San Francisco, Nick Floyd gave his view on work-life balance:  "Ditch it". 

 

Separating work and life in Floyd's view is outdated.  His approach?  What he calls "Nerd Life Balance" -- no longer dividing work and non-work hours. 

 

Tech companies have blurred the divide, often times providing nap rooms for employees who sit at computers 16 hours each day, continuing through the night for "hackathons".  In this philosophy, the engineering culture of the future is always thinking about work.  You're not necessarily working 16-hour days, but "your brain is kind of always thinking about work. While you're rock climbing, you're thinking about work."

 

Programmers and "techies" may resonate with "Nerd Life Balance", yet I'm not sure it's good for anyone.  Human beings are not built to be "on" 24/7.  Just as our bodies need rest, our brains do too -- every 90 minutes, according to the most recent research.  And no one should have to give their life away to any company -- technology based or otherwise. 

 

Where do you stand on the issue of work-life balance? 

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sfMediaProf's curator insight, November 17, 2013 10:17 PM

If you believe, as much brain research indicates, that humans need to disconnect and relax at regular intervals -- let's hope the idea in this article does not gain traction:

According to senior engineer, Nick Floyd, the idea of work and life being separate is outdated and impractical.  Instead, he proposed something new: Nerd Life Balance, in which work and nonwork hours are no longer divided. ...