Stop the world; I want to get off!

Do you ever feel that the joy of living is like that favourite pullover that gets lost under a pile of other clothing? You know it’s there, but you just can’t seem to get to it because everything else gets in the way. That’s what the pressure of modern living can do, but there is another way, as this month’s app of the month reveals, says blogger Stuart Pearcey…

Hold on a minute, wasn’t all this technology supposed to make our lives easier? I’m sure that was what it said in the brochure. Trouble is, the opposite seems to have happened. The better technology means that ‘work’ is able to reach you round the clock and round the year, unless you manage to hide away for a day or two somewhere that doesn’t have half-decent WiFi. And it’s become normal to keep on pounding away on the same old corporate treadmill, answering emails and text messages at all hours of the day or night.

Now don’t get me wrong; I’m a fan of technology. Couldn’t earn my living without it. But just like cream buns, there needs to be a limit, for the good of my health.

As I’ve often said when writing about expense management software from ExpenseOnDemand, we all have two budgets to manage – money and time. More money can be earned; time spend it spent for ever, and if you’ve spent all of your time working, dare I suggest a proportion of it has been frittered away?

But this isn’t just about me; it’s about all of us. That’s why I’m keen on the concept of weekends being battery chargers for people.

Which is why I was pleased to see that Apple, in all its techie ubiquity, has named ‘Calm’ as one of its favorite apps. Having read about it, it’s one of mine too.

The app (for an app it is, but bear with me, even if it looks as though I’m painting myself into a corner), has been designed for those new to the notion of mindfulness. It’s objective is to provide a coping mechanism for those burdened by stress, and seems to be quite easy to use.

It begins as a freebie, reducing the basics of mindfulness meditation with ‘seven days of calm’, and programme of seven 10-minute sessions. If you like what it does, then to go further you’ll need to invest some hard cash. If you don’t, then you can step away.

Nancy Haug, reviewing the product on PsyberGuide, says: “As a long-time meditator, ‘Seven Days of Calm’ was a welcome addition to my daily practice, providing discipline and consistency. The facilitator has a tranquil, soothing voice and she offers the appropriate amount of guidance without extraneous commentary. I especially liked the willingness of the app developers to program in timely intervals of silence to allow the user meditation experiences without interruption. My children completed the Calm Kids and Sleep series. They found the app engaging, and looked forward to their sessions.”

There’s also a companion book, called Calm the Mind, Change the World. I’m all for the concept. We’re all in danger of becoming too pressured, and that can’t be good for us.

Perhaps Calm is the way for you – after all, at nil financial investment for a week of exploration, what have you got to lose?

Or you could get a dog. Take it for a walk; throw it a stick or a ball. Watch the unbridled joy as your canine companion romps after it, tongue lolling and legs pumping away like a cartoon.

The dog knows how to experience the joy of life, for nothing more than the sheer joy of being alive. We could all use a little of that…

Picture: Georgerudy | Dreamstime