The past few weeks I’ve been working to curb some poor psychic hygiene habits that I realized had slipped back in lately. The usual suspects – too much news consumption and mindless social media scrolling.
To help me get back some of my mental bandwidth and focus I first did a major purge of my podcast, YouTube, and email subscriptions. Then I deleted Twitter off my phone along with all of my news apps other than the AP, Reuters, and NextDraft (still a bit of a guilty pleasure but, hey, it only comes out once a day).
I also made a commitment to myself to spend a larger proportion of my time reading full-length books than reading short-form articles. Instead firing up the Podcasts app while making coffee in the morning, I’ve begun to listen to an Audible audiobook instead. Rather than dive into lengthy articles on The Atlantic or The New York Times, I’m more often opening up my Kindle (or the Kindle app on my phone).
But…there are still those times that you get a hankering for that sweet little hit of information and visual stimulation that our brains have been trained to find in social media, Reddit, or RSS feeds, right? For times like that, I was grateful to discover a really cool, nutritional alternative- the Lucid app! Lucid offers visual-supported summaries of books and lessons on important concepts. It’s amazing tool for folks like me who learn things much better when I can immediately anchor ideas with images.
According to their website, “by visualizing and clarifying complex insights from the world’s greatest thinkers, we’re helping people around the world master essential topics and learn new skills, quickly and easily.”
I made my way through their lesson on “Uniting Computers and Human Brains” and their notes on Garcia and Miralles’ book, Ikigai, this week and the illustrations of the core themes have really helped those ideas stick more firmly in my brain.
Besides holing up in our air-conditioned bedroom watching TV, we’ve also been fortunate to receive invites from family and friends to join them on some getaways down by the Ligurian sea in Cinque Terre and up in the Aosta Valley mountain village of Cogne.
After all of the relentlessly sticky days here in Turin, taking a dip in those cool Mediterranean waters and waking up to find it was sweater weather in the Italian Alps were both wonderful reasons to celebrate indeed!