Manifest Monday // Lost In Textlation – The 5 Perks of Living Unplugged

3am.
 The time I arrived home one morning, following a night of getting lost in an epic tour of Toronto with a friend I had just met (in all fairness, I did forewarn her of my direction impairment), attending a business premier, eating copious amounts of delicious plant-based food (and a couple of squares of Giddy Yoyo dark chocolate), going to one of my favourite places (I know where you’ve guessed but it was, in fact, not the beach this time); the airport, and sharing a vegan burrito & very cozy ride home with a nomadic traveler & six-foot tall surfboard.
So naturally, the first thing I wanted to do was to snuggle into bed to check my Instagram, lurk his surf & travel photos (videography being what he does for a living) and “follow” the freedom project, a not-for-profit organization of which I’d just gabbed about with the founder and CEO over cauliflower & beet salads.
That, however, proved more difficult with the loss of my wi-fi reception, and what good is a phone without Internet and iMsg?? Now, I wasn’t particularly disgruntled on the matter until I found out our wi-fi was working, it was my phone that wasn’t and a quick call to Telus unveiled their cynical plan to ruin my lurking escapades : their system was down.
Stranded without a phone, gasping for reception, clinging desperately to my every last hope of vicarious traveling through mini photos on an instant feed, I gave in, put my cell down and vowed to spend the remainder of the day without it.
port
Even cell phones have their limits and so should you! While your cell may disconnect you from web surfing now and again, life may connect you with a new friend and surfer. While your cell phone may lose service for texting, life gives you the service of personable phone calling. And though your phone may, at some point, limit you from fixating on a screen, life will have you transfixed on the world around you. We would all do well to stick limits on our phones before they teach us this lesson on their own merit and these are 5 Holistic perks that emerged from being lost in textlation:
 

Perk #1: Mastering the art of communication beyond the 7%

  • What happened when I solemnly swore to stay off my phone? I actually had to call people! Now I for one, love talking on the phone, I adore it, and this was the perfect excuse. As social beings, we need to actually hear people’s intonations and their “LOLs.” Laughter, after all, is intoxicating and stimulates our feel good endorphins when we hear it in person. Reading the abbreviation “LOL” doesn’t do it justice. In fact, through our personal lives, social lives, right down to our business lives, communication is everything, but a measly 7% of communication comes through the content of the message. What accounts for the remaining 93%? UCLA professor AlbertMehrabian found that 58% of communication is through body language, and 35% through vocal tone, pitch, and emphasis.
    • Prescription For Wellness; when discussing important news or attempting to resolve an issue, refrain from the temptation to do so over text message. Calling is an upgrade but to reap the benefits of the 58% body language communication, you want to do so in person.

Stranded on a dessert island

  • A little effect I like to call: lost in textlation: no matter what you type or how strategically you type it, the true intention (sarcasm, joking, sweet vs flirty, serious..) will never translate in the exact same way to the receiving end (and this is even before considering an accidental autocorrect-desert is a lot less appetizing than dessert).  The other person is bound to read it differently and this just leads to crossed eyes and hair pulling, neither of which are considered healthy practises.

 

Free to a good roam

  • Money, yes. I know the struggle all too well of roaming charges when we grace the border while touring Niagara Falls. My phone, being the adventurous type, loves the thrill of pretending it is in the USA and as a consequence, charges me in the long run. Of course, I weasel my honest way out of roaming fees and so should you! But the roaming I’m referring to here is the constant checking of your cellular device. PEW Research Center found that 67% of cell users check their phone for messages, alerts, and calls even when  their phone isn’t ringing or vibrating.  Phones offer a fantastic modality for distraction and can drain our days of motivation and promote procrastination.
  • Putting my phone down forced me to not look at a tiny screen all day. Without constantly checking my phone and getting aimlessly lost in Instagram “liking” and “foodporn” drooling, I found myself having more time and therefore, being far more productive and active! And an additional perk: there are problems that set in with dry eyes simply because people become transfixed on screens and withhold the autonomic impulse to blink! So I had happy, glossy eyes too 😉
  • Prescription for wellness;
    • Want to kick-start an empowered, energized and productive day? Disconnect from your phone, step outside, create your day’s game plan, read, meditate and go about your morning unplugged for 1 hour first thing each morning!
 skyfall

Backspace the aches and pains

  • Dry eyes? How about the painful cell phone hunch? We were born with opposable thumbs and with this came our natural stature to walk upright on two legs. And though those nimble thumbs have come in handy for navigating miniature keyboards, they’ve also provoked a real pain the back.  The hunch is the new physical condition evocative of the ever downward tilt of the neck and shoulders from the constant use of our phones. On average we spend 2-4 hours daily in this unnatural angle according to CBS news which also suggests that good posture reduces levels of the stress hormone cortisol to help you become more at peace. And speaking of a piece of zen…

Unlimited post-phone presence plans

Presence
  • Yes, presence. When disconnecting with the phone, we connect more to ourselves. There is less comparison to the glorious moments of people’s lives (the only ones we really post after all) and more time to ground and center your thoughts. You become more in tune with your body, your thoughts and emotions. Cellular devices can become coping mechanisms and pretty poor ones at that. Ever been bored or sad and looked through copious amounts of fitness and travel photos posted and felt the comparison creep in?
  • When we disconnect our phones, it forces us to look up and connect to our surroundings and the people around us. In our fast paced technological world, time, energy and awareness are three of the greatest things we could gift another human being with and can create a lasting impact. To have genuine, human, in person interactions where facial expressions come from a face and not an emoji and hearts are felt, not typed ❤
Instead of living vicariously through the adventures of my new friend from her trip to Guatemala or surfing photos of my back seat burrito buddy, I dreamt of my own travels there and made a game plan on how to do it.
And so I leave you with this: a suggestion for this week’s Wellness Weekly Challenge: to one day (or at least half a day) a week, find yourself in a total technology detox. This includes computers, cell phones, TVs, etc. To disconnect to pigmented images on a screen and connect authentically to yourself, to the incredible people you’re with and to the animated and unemoji’d world around you.

Tuning off to tune in for tonight’s family dinner of wild caught cod,

Suzanne Eden

Holistic Travel ~*~ Flight Edition

From the cramped legs, to the dehydration, to the plastic cased “food” with ingredients that look like they’re from a foreign country themselves, to needing a full 2 shoe sizes larger when you land… air travel can get a bit uncomfortable. Luckily, after some trial and error, I’ve got a few tricks up my sleeve to hopefully make it a little more enjoyable.

 

1. Be your own flight attendant

  • Make your own food for the flight. I made an amazing salad with avocado, pea sprouts and grapes for the flight I was on which was not only incredibly delicious but was looked at by the flight attendant who congratulated me on bringing my own food… now that says something. Plus this allows you the freedom to eat whenever you want and not have wait, salivating while the attendant makes their way down the aisle.

2. Go easy, go light & kill two birds with one stone (so to speak)

  • I pack lots of easy snacks as I get hungry waiting for the plane. This trip I took clementines, grapes, bananas and a trail mix of dried coconut, banana, gogi berries and raw cacao nibs. Packing fruit is not only easy but also very hydrating before a flight (hence the two birds with one stone). The trail mix is a good snack as well though I usually keep it for once i’ve arrived as dried fruit is high in sugar and can be dehydrating, but I love it as a little treat and even sprinkled some in my salad.

packing

The smiley face ball? For a pulled muscle in my thigh… and a good laugh, its so darn cute.

 

3. Go coco for electrolytes

  • This is one of my favourite tips! Perhaps because it’s the perfect excuse to load up on coconut water… as if we needed one though right? 😉 electrolytes are hugely important in maintaining hydration and may aid in reducing the foot swelling effect of the plane. I drink a large can of blue monkey (the only one I can drink on its own, and with pulp.. of course!) right before customs and keep another can or two in my  luggage to drink once I’ve arrived.

4. I’ll have an organic rooibos tea please….

  • I travel with my own tea bags in my carry on as you can always ask the stewardess for hot water. Peppermint is particularly good for digestion and relaxation but any herbal tea is great and… hydrating!! Other than that, I only drink water on the plane. Sugary juices, alcohol and caffeine are all very dehydrating.

5. Supplements

  • Of course you can’t take me anywhere without my supplements. In my carry on I keep it simple with digestive enzymes to help digest my food, a good multi vitamin, magnesium (for leg cramping) and melatonin in case I can’t sleep. melatonin helps to regulate sleep cycles and is great for jet leg. It doesn’t work for everyone and if you are one of those people, 5HTP is a precursor for melatonin in the body and may be a better option for you.

6. I C what you did there…

  • Vitamin C is an absolute MUST for so many reasons including the fact that it boosts your immune system and… as you may have guessed… helps your cells stay hydrated among a thousand other benefits.

7. Speaking of seeing

  • ditch the contacts. I decided to do a project this year on contact lenses and eye health and as an avid contact wearer I have no idea why I did that! I still wear them but I’m a lot more conscious of them, especially when it comes to the dry conditions of an airplane. They should never be worn during this time as the extremely dry conditions can cause your contacts to become dry and can damage your eyes, especially over time. When it comes to your sight, you don’t want to mess around. I forgot when I was coming home this week and took them out of my eyes right after lift off, not the prettiest sight for the guy beside me i’m sure, but a girls gotta do what she’s gotta do.

8. Release your inner hippie

  • If you hadn’t already spotted me from my pink plaid luggage (you cant help but know its yours when it comes down the conveyor belt!), or my crazy printed yoga pants (comfy pants are a must), or my layers of jewelry, then you probably will when I take to doing yoga on the airport floor. Whether or not you want to go all out on this, some good, simple stretching before a long flight is crucial! Move your body and stretch your limbs, you don’t even need to stand up, just stretch in whatever way you can before and after. The flight compresses and stiffens your muscles and can restrict blood flow. If you want a more comfortable flight, get moving!

  • I always travel with my etheric weaver but you can take any grounding stones you’d like and some are very inexpensive. It’s important to stay grounded when you’re so high in the air and I never travel without it.

  • The one other essential I am never without is a journal and a good soul read. My favourite? The power of now by Eckhart Tolle.

9. Prepare for take off

  • I don’t normally advise gum chewing but this is an exception. It’s important to ease the air pressure from your middle ear. I like the brand Pur (available at health food stores) for this. Ginger is also a decent option. I like Gin-Gins which are also available at health food stores but very addictive so proceed with caution.

plane

Perhaps it’s the high altitude, or the anticipation of wild adventures and uncharted discoveries, but air travel is a very surreal experience. Here I sit, soaring above the clouds in the company of many souls, all headed the same way and yet to different places entirely. And here, among the sleeping souls and darkness of the skies that have seen their last kiss of the sun you realize how insignificant your worries are in the vast expanse of things. It is as if you are looking down at a doll house and thinking “ill plop down there fore a little while” and you find yourself immersed in another reality. Its simply stunning. This is why my soul yearns to travel.

With much wander-lusting love,

Suzanne Eden