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Latest POSTS

Have you had a digital spring clean?

[NOTE: This was written for my Friday Newsletter audience, so some bits might not feel quite relevant to a blog post, but I think it's worth sharing anyway because I think writers (& marketeers) should check for consent more regularly when publishing. Not just for their audience's benefit, but for their own stats to be clean and honest too. Here I go...]

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Who built these stairs?

[...] However, one day, my friend was walking down this same trail, as he had all week, when he came across a man with a power tool, cutting what appeared to be a staircase into the cliff side. He asked the man what he was doing and the man said something along the lines of 'This trail is used a lot, but the entrance to the beach is a bit steep and dangerous.’ [...]

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I spy with my little eye...

I spy with my little eye something beginning with N…Can you see it?Have you noticed it today?Whoever and wherever you are it’s definitely in front of you.Unless your Lord Voldemort that is.Ah. That kind of gives it away though.

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How can we learn to care and take care?

I float between two modes. They seem conflicting but of course they needn’t be, I’ve just not quite learned to integrate them yet. On the one hand I am somebody who cares deeply. I can get sucked into the news and into important social topics like climate change, like education, like democracy, like freedom of information, like privacy, like workers rights… When I start reading, thinking, discussing these topics I feel a fire burn inside me. Like I want to really go there. Go to battle. Like I want to put every ounce of influence that I can have into somehow bettering these causes or at least slightly bettering some of these causes. I feel called. I want to write. To think. To devise alternatives. To take things back to first principles and built back up from there. To invite others to come play with me. It starts off with some reading. Then some writing. Then some sharing. Then some discussing. And before you know it, my sleep is a bit worse, I’m less present at home with my family, I spend more time on screens and drink more coffee...etc

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The dangers of 'Silicon Mindfulness'

Mindfulness is very often misunderstood and whilst there are many benefits that come with taking it out of its religious doctrine, there are also some potential pitfalls.

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What do mushrooms, coffee, plastic and facebook have in common?

About ten years ago I spent a couple of weeks working on an organic farm in the jungles of Belize. On the farm I met an American urban gardening student who told me all about his new business idea. He was going to charge Starbucks to drive to all their coffee shops in his van and take away all the used mounds of coffee grinds. Essentially waste disposal. Then he was going to use the coffee grinds to grow mushrooms in paper bags and then was going to sell the bags of mushrooms back to Starbucks to sell in their store. The idea was that he could make money twice off the coffee. Get paid to collect it, get paid to give it back with its new use case, the mushrooms.

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Have you ever day dreamt a social media post?

The present moment has itself become a commodity. Something to put online to add to our social currency, meanwhile feeding the beast. Making it stronger. Were a social media addict to notice their thoughts mindfully, they would notice they sometimes think in tweets and posts. Life is no longer a journey, life is a facebook feed.

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Is sharing always caring?

When we moved here, we first rented a place on AirBnb for a month and then tried our best to find a spot near the beach but couldn’t. It’s not that there weren’t apartments available, there are tonnes of empty flats. We just couldn’t find anywhere that accepted long term rentals. Only a month or two max. The reason is that in the summer, they rent apartments out for loads of money to tourists. The implications of this is that there is an island and a heavenly coastline full of empty apartments in the off season. So locals who grew up here before the surf crowds moved in have gradually, over the years, moved from the beautiful coast to the nearest village, and to the next one, and to the next one… and so on.

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Are we all becoming marketeers?

I see this pattern whereby people become either very good or very passionate about something. Whether this is an expertise in a particular field or a passion for a broader topic or particular purpose. Then that person after receiving sufficient validation decides that they now want to make it. Suddenly their instagram is filled with videos sharing fortune cookie like statements reducing huge complexity into bite size quotes. They're now posting pictures from everything they’ve done.

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The lost art of emailing a friend

A couple of weeks ago, I received an email from him entitled "The lost art of emailing a mate with an update on life". It was almost 1,000 words long and had a few beautiful pictures of the farm he's working on and of him slipping on his boots for his day at work. He updated me on his life and enquired about mine.

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How does this buddhist monk use his smartphone?

Grant me a moment to stalk this unknowing monk. I took this picture in Dharamasala, India in 2013. I remember coming to the end of a hike and walking past this man and feeling struck by him. He’s wearing a pair of trainers (seemingly indoor 5-a-side football shoes!), has one legged propped up against the post looking casual and cool and… he's on his smartphone! Yes a buddhist monk on his smartphone. I couldn’t believe it! My brain struggled to reconcile these two seemingly contradictory things together.

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Have you seen the "No Tech" sign on a plane?

Am I late to notice this? I was on a flight the other day and instead of a no smoking light above each seat, it had a no tech sign. Have you seen this?

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Not available on Amazon: Why I post my books from home

My new book isn't available on Amazon, instead I'm posting each copy myself. Considering the topic, it would kind of be ironic if it was on Amazon. Tech Monopolies are getting in the way of us really connecting and what I'm trying to do with my own business here is create real relationships with people.

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