Everyone needs breaks, especially from our devices and social media, but we don’t take them often enough for our health. In this episode, Katy discusses her upcoming extended social media break and the changes she’ll make in communicating and teaching, and Dani offers tips from her successful annual Take Back Your Time social media challenge.
KATY: I have a good zombie story but I'm not going to tell you right now, I'll tell you later.
DANI: Welcome to the Katy Says podcast where Dani Hemmat, that's me, and Katy Bowman talk about movement: the tiny details, the larger issues and why movement matters.
KATY: And I'm Katy Bowman I'm Katy Bowman, biomechanist and author of Move Your DNA.
DANI: And I'm Dani Hemmat, a chronically curious movement geek goofball. And today, ha ha, today we're preppers. Not for the zombie apocalypse, silly, but for a major hiatus from social media.
KATY: Are you gonna do a social media break too?
DANI: I am.
KATY: So you did one last year.
DANI: I did. I did. It was awesome.
KATY: Well how long was it?
DANI: It was an entire month. The whole month of July from the 1st to the 31st. And it was everything. No Instagram, no facebook, no twitter. Nothin'.
KATY: Did, I'm sorry, I just kicked my microphone...
DANI: That's ok...
KATY: Ka-thunk. Take that! Did you, so it wasn't screen restrict... like there are all kinds of different challenges.
DANI: Right it wasn't screen free.
KATY: You were still working.
DANI: I was still using Netflix and stuff and still using my computer to do emails and all that...
DANI: ...but I just wasn't in social media.
KATY: Yeah, it was very specific.
DANI: It wasn't screen free, it was social media free.
KATY: That's great. And I think it's important to delineate. There are a lot of different ways. There are a lot of different things that you can step away from. Like people might say "well there's no way I can step away from my computer!" We've done the screen free week show.
KATY: This is a social media specific step back. Yes?
KATY: Ok. And I'm gonna do something similar.
KATY: And I've been talking about it.
DANI: Do you have a length of time or are you still playing around with that?
KATY: I'm still...well what are you gonna do because maybe I'll...
DANI: I'm gonna do a month again but I wanted to ask you what you're thoughts were on this because I'm also doing this thing where I'm walking 2,017 miles in this year and I post every day on Instagram.
KATY: Well, let's talk about that. That's a good...
DANI: Ok. Good.
KATY: I think that you know, I enjoy challenges. It serves the same purpose for me like setting out on a 20 miles walk - something with a definite end, you know. I do well with the rules of the challenge. Like what are the things? So... I'm gonna do something similar as well. I've done a month. Last year I think I did a little bit longer. I think I did the remaining spring. It was my spring break. And I didn't do the full three months of spring but I think I did 6 weeks of it. Like it was the midpoint and I was like, "I want to enjoy the rest of my spring." I needed to step back. I had written a lot of books close together.
KATY: So, I am shooting for three to six months.
KATY: Which is huge.
DANI: That's nice
KATY: Yes, well it's a nice break but alongside that the reality is social media makes up a lot of my work, you know. How I connect to many people is via social media.
DANI: For you, when you say the breaks, you mean you're not posting nor are you visiting.
KATY: Oh, correct.
DANI: Ok, just to make sure.
KATY: What I find for me, yeah, we were talking last time about, like I find for me there are two parts of social media. The posting part is actually fairly easy. Although, it's begun affecting the way that I live my life. You know, like when I'm out having my life and part of the experience of having my life is is to disrupt my engagement with the experience and the immediate
KATY: like framing of the experience as a lesson for other people, then I have to look at, wow, like my work is overstepping into every capacity. And I could argue that that's not actually what my work is at all. Like, what I put on social media, it might be what I'm calling my work right now, but if I were to define what I want my work to be and where I think it's best, it would not be really engaging in social media. Like there are other things that I could be working on and developing that aren't what I call blurting. Which is like a really short outburst. So it's the posting and then, of course, there's the mindless scrolling. For me meaning it's another way of checking out - of just like looking through everything. And I was like, I don't feel... like I didn't come here with a purpose. I came here just ... I came here out of habit.
KATY: And so I've had an experience, and again I posted this on social media, like I lost my father a few weeks ago, I'm in the process of losing a dear friend and so I've really come face to face of this idea that I want to make sure that I'm aware of how I'm choosing to spend all of my minutes. And for me, activity, for me, activities like social media have begun to have an element of purposelessness. Like it's just like I don't what else to do. I'm not choosing, I'm not looking at my personal mission statement. I'm not actively seeking anything. It's just kind of like flipping through the channels.
KATY: I got rid of the TV but I've got other channels to flip through now and so I really want to take a step back from that. One, to make sure that I can. There's a lot of information now about technology addiction and so it's really hard, it's really easy for me to perceive that I can step away whenever I want as long as I'm never stepping away. So this is a challenge for me. It's a know thyself challenge. Like I want to know, you know, am I ok. Like I've been reading a lot of books of different themes and it doesn't matter which, like if it's on farming or on civilization or ants like I keep coming back to this theme of there are a lot of things I would rather be doing than this but I'm not doing them...
KATY: ...and I need to so that's why I personally am doing this. What's your reason?
DANI: Well, I feel like it's pretty easy for me to step away now after doing that month. I saw the light and how awesome it is. For me, it's like kind of a decluttering of my brain.
KATY: Hmm. Cool.
KATY: And we've done a show on it before. Right.
KATY: So if anyone wants to listen to the experiences from last year they can.
KATY: So let's talk about prep.
DANI: Yes. It's important, I think, to prep with any habit change.
DANI: At least for most people.
KATY: Well, it's a challenge, right. Like this is a challenge, so there is like, so if you were gonna do like the Whole 30 or something like that you wouldn't be like, "I'm gonna do it" and then have no resources available.
DANI: Right. Yeah.
KATY: It makes it easier. And it's totally different than your phone falling in the water. Like there are those catastrophic impositions, like, "I'm on a social..." I've had people say, "I've dropped my phone" or "I broke," o maybe it was actually you last year where you were like, "I was off social media for a week..." No, it was my nephew and he said, "It was amazing.Like I couldn't text like people had to actually call my house." Like there are... let's... I want to talk about all, for me, it's social media but it's also the use of my phone as an appendage.
KATY: Because the bulk of what I do with my phone is, I don't know what to call it. It's a... and I'm not talking about the work stuff. I'm talking about the non-work stuff. So I think you can leave what you do as your job out of this if you're thinking about it.
KATY: Like for me... I got a handwritten letter the other day. And it, like, blew my mind. And I felt like, "I could never write a handwritten letter. These thumbs are made for texting." You know, the fact that when we had friends who moved where we were and they were like, they had never texted before. They would just always call. And we're texters. We're like group texters and we totally converted them from people who would call you to have a conversation to texting. And it's not to say that texting hasn't been fun or doesn't have value. I would say that, after my father lost his hearing, he was a great communicator and lover of technology, I got years and years of fun, connection with my dad because he could text just fine. He just couldn't hear. And so you couldn't be funny anymore because he couldn't hear what anyone was saying to offer a quip or a witticism but texting he was all day about it.
DANI: That's cool.
KATY: So it allowed him to participate and for me to continue to know that aspect of our relationship. This is not judgment or that these things are good or bad. It's simply time for me to step away. So I had to look at what are the things. There's texting. There's obviously going through that social media...
DANI: scroll yeah
KATY: ...that we talk about. The leopard in a cage, like, cycle through everything.
DANI: Mm-hmm. And I think filming everything.
KATY: Filming everything. Taking a picture. Documenting everything. And then map-age, like a big skill, like we have totally switched, like I used to get into my 1989 Honda Civic that, FYI, used to fill up for $8 for a tank of gas. 36 miles a gallon.
KATY: Uphill, both ways. And I had a map, like an atlas of maps. And I would drive all over the United States. I had no cell phone. I had nothing. And nothing that I would be paralyzed with fear if I were to leave today without those things today. Right? Like, "It's so unsafe to be on the road." Our perception of what is safe is just basically the difference between what we have and not having it anymore. Like we've begun to project safety on just abundance.
KATY: And so, we have gotten maps for the last few trips that we've taken and tried to go back to being able to navigate off of a piece of paper rather than just having a person tell us, "Turn left here." You know, like...
KATY: ... you can totally zone out.
DANI: And you're not paying attention to any landmarks, any sun on the hills.
KATY: Nothing. No.
DANI: You're like, "ok thank you."
KATY: And at the same time we're talking about re-wilding. And a simple way to re-wild is to get rid of your GPS. To go back to engaging visually with your landscape. Like that is becoming a lost skill. It could very easily be that when everyone in the world has a smart phone you know that everyone is, like, what is the cloud? Like there are actual clouds and there's this other thing that I don't understand called the cloud and it's just, like, it has the information in it but if it's not there anymore, I would feel lost. And so, taking up navigation, again, and I'm not talking about orienteering in the backcountry. Like, I'm talking about driving around my own town. Like just really simple things that I got...
KATY: ... away from over the last four or five years. And so to go back to, I feel like I'm talking a lot, to go back to that community part of what I'm trying to do is, I mean there are communities and the thing community provides, and I have a very large online community that I love and learn tremendous things from, for sure, and vice versa, I would hope. But at the same time, what's needed for me here is an in-person community. Because I can't make the transition to the things that I have - to the wisdom or the knowledge that I have, like, has led me to the point of well, it's still an in-person community that's needed. You can have an amazing online community to share and swap ideas, but the fact of the matter is, many things require a person to person exchange and a large portion of my time is cultivating an online community versus an in-person community. Like so, you know, again, what's the Dallas Hartwig's ... less is
DANI: Less media, more social.
KATY: Yes. More social, less media. That there are opportunities for developing a community that gets thwarted by my interaction with online community. So I've like, over the years, I recognized this over the years and I've been definitely pulling back and creating the in-person community - it's not like magic. It's not like, "Wow, you're so lucky to have a community." This is work.
KATY: This has required me going, "Hey, I have my body right now. How can I serve you with my physical body? Can I watch your kids? Can I weed your farm? Can I make you dinner? Can you come over to my house for dinner?" But if you don't ask those questions and don't put your physical body out there, you're not going to. It has required a lot of movement, yeah.
DANI: I have to share this story related to that. So last year when I did the take a break challenge, there was 50 people, over 50 people from all over the world that joined in which was really cool and participated and it affected everybody positively. They loved it. But one of my friends, Pamela, she, during the challenge, she sent out in her neighborhood, she hand delivered little hand written invitations to everybody on her street and it just said, "I'm gonna be in my front yard for coffee. I don't know any of you." It was way more eloquent than what I'm saying. "I don't know any of you. Bring your coffee, bring a chair. I'm gonna be in my front yard Saturday from 9 to 11."
KATY: I love that.
DANI: And she set up her little chair with a pot of coffee and her cup and just sat out in her yard. And instead of scrolling through her phone and reading the news and any of that jazz, she just waited for people to show up. And people showed up.
DANI: I know. How cool is this? And she met neighbors that she had, they had never interacted. And I just think that was such a cool, positive, action for her to use her body to serve the community. You know.
DANI: And bring it together. That was a neat, positive thing that came out of last year's challenge.
KATY: And, you know, we've talked about building community and it might be at that step to building community is take a social media break because if you, there's only, we have a limited resource of time and attention and it's, if you're throwing abundance towards online, which, again, isn't to say that you're not gonna make friendships and get what you need that way, it's just that ... There's a need to not outsource all of your community to people who are living in a different place than you. There's a real, tangible need for in-person community and so you don't want to use all your community dollars... you don't want to spend them all online. So, what was the other thing that I was just thinking about that? So, I have a job and what I do is educate but I personally have just, I've enjoyed the freedom that short social media bursts give me versus, like, one long, you know, writing of a blog post or whatever gives me. I've enjoyed that particular freedom. But what's happened is I've heard other people say, "Well, I would love to give up social media, but I am so into learning what you're teaching right now, that I'm afraid if I go offline for 30 days, I'm gonna miss it." So, I realize that I, too, am in a relationship with keeping other people online.
KATY: If other people are online because it's the way that I'm choosing to teach, then they're unable to make a transition. So I thought well it's an ecology. We can transition together. So I need to find a way. I'm currently in process, how can I find a way to give out what I'm giving that doesn't require that you check your phone 40 times a day to see if I have given anything. Which is just like an agreement between you and me. Like, here's what I'm going to do for the next - for my social media break. I'm going to be preparing a monthly newsletter. So I already have a monthly newsletter but it's been more like just general, you know, just kind of, it's like a general newsletter.
KATY: I'm going to transition to giving out those bits of information but just in a more robust piece. But it'll only come out once a month. You know to look for it. You know that it will be there in your inbox. You don't have to engage with social media to make sure you don't miss anything. Because I'm not going to put out anything that you're gonna miss. We're gonna both be able to step away from constantly checking into these other things. And if you don't want to, that's fine. But at least I feel like I'm not enabling, right?
DANI: That's cool.
KATY: So, it's just a way, this is a stack your life type thing. This is a way of changing a behavior that still accomplishes the same thing but in a different way. So it just, it's gonna require that the relationship with social media and the way that I work change and then, of course, the trigger is other people will have a change in the way that they're interacting with my material too. My material becomes more aligned with my message.
KATY: So, that's what I will be working on. So sign up for the newsletter if you haven't already. It will be at NutritiousMovement.com.
DANI: Yes. It's usually a pretty darn good newsletter too.
KATY: It's full, but it'll be better.
KATY: It'll be better, you know?
DANI: How are you preparing for your own, you know what the plan is when you're gonna go on hiatus but how are you preparing for your own self and your own possible addiction or withdrawal? Are there things that you're doing now, like cutting back? Like every once in a while I'll just take a one to three-day break. Just not planned. I'll put it down, like, that's it, and I'll walk away. Because I learned last year during the big break, I survived and it just feels, my brain just really got opened and uncluttered. It's kind of nice to take those small little decluttering breaks. Just to kind of always remind yourselves. Like I recommend doing these breaks definitely more than once a year.
KATY: Oh yeah. You know, and to put mini-breaks in, you know, like one day a week or certainly like, I mean it starts with like, can you take a longer break whether it's a month or a week? Can you take the weekend off? Yes or no. Can you take the nighttime off? Yes or no. Can you take dinner off? Can you leave it in your car? Like, so, any of those would be a step for you to measure how comfortable/uncomfortable you feel without that device being able to engage with. And like even little things like ask the magic, anytime you want to know anything, there is a culture that develops when whenever you want to know something you no longer have to think about it. You just ask the magic box and lo and behold, it answers. And that's gonna be really funny that I just said that, because I just read this article and I took a picture of it so I could share it because it was, I know I know, I get the irony of all this, like it was so, it was so powerful to me. So I was reading The Economist, April 8-14. "Why Computers Will Never Be Safe" is the cover. The name of the article is "Mind Meld" and it's a book review on a book called The Knowledge Illusion: Why We Never Think Alone. I haven't read the book yet because I just read the review of it. And they're saying "do you know how a toilet works? Do you know how a zipper works? Do you know how a bicycle works?" Like most people are utilizing gajillions of technology that they have little to no understanding of how they actually work. They are daily occurrences, they've been in their lives always. Their skill level is adapted to all these technologies but they actually don't know how it works and that, what these cognitive scientists were saying, it's a book that's drawn on evolutionary theory and psychology, they're saying that we're always striving to do as little as possible, right?
KATY: Because that's like, that's like the human condition that we store knowledge then throughout community but the members do not realize that this is the case. That different people know different things but that we know a bare minimum and that we really depend on the collective knowledge that we've outsourced knowing. that was their word, "Outsourced knowing". That we have this outsourcing habit and so when I was reading this I was like, yes, ok, it's very similar again to Movement Matters' ideas where we've outsourced, we can say that we've outsourced movement but we've also outsourced knowledge, right? We're trying definitely to get it back or we have people who are in charge of getting it back and then perhaps people who are in charge of disseminating it to the public. But again, it's challenging to do that and you can only know so much and your tendency is, perhaps, to know as little as possible and so that they're really saying you need to be skeptical of your own knowledge and the wisdom of your crowd, because that's going to lead you to how you think things actually work. So it made me think, yes, ok, I understand this and that what I've been personally working on is given that there's so much to know like I don't need to know how a zipper works. Like, I have to prioritize what's actual life necessity knowledge and which isn't. Like I would say that knowing how to get water, if it wasn't, like, if someone else wasn't piping it to your house, knowing how to get water and about water, that's a greater priority for me. So thus, I create a relationship with find a spring and start looking at the newspaper columns... This is what I'll be doing on my social media break is identifying outsourced, critical outsourced knowledge.
KATY: Like you can outsource it but when you start outsourcing where your food come from, how to get food, what's edible, where's water, where do you put your waste, how do you deal with waste so that everyone doesn't get sick, basic medicine
KATY: not things that require other people's' knowledge. Like how can I tend to myself and then, of course, there's the movement component. Like there are so many, like midwifery. Like what are the knowledges that humans really rely on where you become very precarious when that foundational knowledge has been outsourced for the knowledge that you prefer to have. Which, again, is enjoyable but maybe not critical. So, anyway, I don't know how I got to that but it was just a fascinating article.
DANI: Have you, you've probably read the Natural Navigator and Lost Art of Reading Nature Signs?
KATY: Yeah. Yeah. I'm snapping a picture right now.
DANI: Oh, ok, cool. Awesome. Those are good books for what you're talking about.
KATY: Yeah, and so that's what I'm planning on doing. I don't have a plan for should I like I don't have a plan for failure. Like what happens if I get back on. Like I don't anticipate that being an issue. I definitely have a period of transition like you said. But mostly it's about setting the intention for when I'm gone. Like why am I gone?
KATY: Instead of just going I should go on a mini-break because that's actually not good for me.
DANI: That actually brings me to one of my favorite tips.
KATY: Tell me.
DANI; For prepping for this. Because some people are freaked out about what they're gonna do and they are worried about failure. Which is totally understandable. I suggest you make a two-part list. The first part is if you just kind of brainstorm and take a little bit of time and get to a quiet spot and think about the things you liked to do before you had social media. So you kind of have to go back, what, 8 years or so, 10 years. And think about...
KATY: What was fun for you?
DANI: Oh for me?
KATY: Yeah, like what have you replaced?
DANI: Just sitting around and goofing around on your guitar.
KATY: Oh. Ok great. I like it.
DANI: Just picking it up. Or, remember just sitting and listening to music without doing anything else?
KATY: That used to be a thing!
DANI: That used to be a thing! And you would do it and you would sit and talk with other people or you would be by yourself or you'd read lyrics or... those things...
KATY: But see I can't tell, I can't tell if that's a younger person's thing or a social media thing. Because with, we're in a, at least I am, I think you are too, I'm in a time where, you know, all I know is my own reality that social media came on with children. Like I got my first smart phone when I got my first baby, like, within a couple of months. And so it's very hard for me to separate parenting from smartphone usage. Like how interesting is that?
DANI: Interesting. Yeah.
KATY: Because how else are you supposed to record your child's life and your every thought. Like, even as I'm looking through pictures now in preparing for different family events and I see that there were, like maybe seventeen pictures existing for every year of my life.
DANI: Oh yeah.
KATY: You know there was like three Christmas... and all of them were bad. But they weren't bad. What they documented like you can barely see anyone's face but you can see what clothes and what people were eating for breakfast and you can see that everyone was smoking in the pictures and what was the Marlboro lights advertising on the newspaper. There was a lot of information that doesn't come in these perfectly crafted artistic, so I need to realize that it's ok to not document a life. That that is just one person of one culture's experience and no one knows how that's going to affect the culture going forward.
KATY: All of these books that are saying it. So like I, it's not about going retro, it's just about making sure that I'm not overly tying unrelated things together. So I like that....
DANI: Right. That's a good point.
KATY: I have to think about that. What did I do before?
DANI: That takes a while. That takes a while to make that list. So keep that list and then you go back in the second part and you make the second list about things you want to do. Just simple like...
KATY: Like you've always wanted to do?
DANI: Yeah, you know, like learn to juggle.
KATY: Yeah, yeah yeah.
DANI: I don't know, learn to pluck your eyebrows. Whatever it is, I don't care. But you make that list because I used to smoke. Years ago I was a smoker and when I quit smoking whenever I'd want a cigarette I'd grab a piece of gum or take a drink of water. This substitution. Think when you're first weening yourself off social media and your phone addiction, just to have that go to list so that when you feel like, "Ah, I gotta check my phone!" that you can look at that list and go "Or... I could bake a cake."
DANI: "Or I could pick up my guitar." I like having those quick and ready substitutions because your brain isn't wired right now for the stuff you used to like to do. It's wired to what you are doing right now. You can have the reference, it really does help a lot.
KATY: And put them in your hand almost. Like almost have them ready to go...
DANI: Yeah, I had them out on the fridge. So it's like, whenever I felt like I missed my phone or I missed social media, I would just do one of those things on the list and boom it was gone, immediately.
KATY: Well and like we said last time, remove the apps. Right?
KATY: Definitely remove your social media apps. I wonder if you can even temporarily, like, downgrade your data plan, right? Where there's like an incentive there. Call and say, "I need to go off for a few months, can you do this?" And I've been toying around with no texting during this time too. Like actually physically calling people on the phone.
DANI: Are you a big texter?
KATY: I am because it's the way that I have become so productive, is I've outsourced single person communication to mass grouping text to a lot of people. And you get, it's kind of like, you know when you have kids or you yourself are hungry it's very easy to quelch...that's not the right word, to squelch.
DANI: That's an awesome word though.
KATY: Thank you. Quelch. I was thinking to quench and squelch together. To quench your need for water or, I'm sorry for food. You can eat junk food in that it'll mitigate the signal but that doesn't mean that that was the best way to meet that need. It just means that our signals haven't adjusted to all of the things that are available right now. So when you are itching to connect or itching for input of some type, you can basically do the equivalent to eat a Sn... I'm not going to say Snickers Bar ... you can do the equivalent to drinking a cup of Coca-Cola to get those signals to go off. Which would be like picking up and just doing a lap, or you could, like you said, go outside and count birds. Like someone told me once if you are having like an anxious feeling, and I've done this with my kids for other reasons, just to get them to focus on something different, identify 5 natural sounds. And immediately sends their brain looking for something. Or can you see how many different bird species can you see right now? Or, you know, like, some sort of game that you have that when you notice yourself getting a particular loop, that you send your mind seeking for ... seeking a different type of input that is more aligned with what you yourself would like to be seeking.
KATY: That would be my back pocket tip.
DANI: That's good. Well, I think I just kind of through this talk, answered my question I asked at the beginning about my walking project and Instagram.
KATY: What are you gonna do?
DANI: I think I am gonna take a break from it. Because I'm still gonna be walking and people know it. That's all.
KATY: Or... yeah. I mean the thing is it's ok if you're like "Hey, guess what? I will be walking these five days."
DANI: It is ok.
KATY: Like if you want to post something before like, "I'm on a social.. make these days ... and what will I be doing? I'm walking this day and walking this day..."
KATY: Or you could encourage people to say, like, "I'm going to be posting a weekly recap of my walks through my newsletter." Which just...it trains you and it allows you that if you still feel that need of connection if you still want that body of work to be there you could just do it a different way. Like why couldn't you just send out a blog post to do it?
DANI: That's a good idea.
KATY: To say, "I'm gonna be off social media." But is a blog social media? You get to define if it is or if it isn't. So, so many different ways.
DANI: Yeah. That's very helpful. I'm excited. I hope a lot of people decide, you know, it doesn't have to be for a month. It doesn't have to be for 3 to 6 months but, they really are helpful.
KATY: I think so.
DANI: And until you take them you don't realize how helpful they are.
KATY: No, exactly. It's like coming out of a structured shoe. You never knew it felt a particular way until you felt something different.
KATY: Ok, when's your month?
DANI: July. I'm gonna do July.
KATY: And I think I'll probably do July, August, September, too. So, enjoy the summer.
DANI: Yeah. I wrote a blog post about my experience and it was, I called it my 1970s summer. Because I actually did think that even though I work and I have kids, I did things like, just was lying there in the grass watching clouds.
DANI: You know and I'm 46 years old and that felt good. It just...to have that removal and just be kind of connected to everybody and everything again was pretty awesome. And I still am carrying over - I'm still high from it.
KATY: And it's available all the time.
DANI: It's available all the time.
KATY: It's like one of those things like, "I wish life was what it was." And I was like, "It just requires powering down." Like it's not not available anymore. The challenge is really identifying like, wow, we have ... eh... So Human an Animal by Rene DuBos who was writing about this in the 50s. He was like, "If the technology is there a human can almost not use it. They're like monkeys running toward shiny trinkets." So he predicted that that would be an issue. That once it was available to not engage with it would take such willpower and or probably that you have to constantly be like critically thinking versus just naturally engaging with your environment.
DANI: Correct. Yes.
KATY: Like you have to be thinking so much to constantly go, "Is that what I want to do? No." Like you basically have to behave like a computer. You have to, like an input: yes or no. Like and I don't know like that's why we've removed couches. That's why we've removed the television. That's why we'll be removing the internet and things from our house. Because if it's not there, it does not require that you live your life constantly running through you know, like those if/and ... you don't have to constantly be doing that. You can just engage more freely with your habitat but your habitat is more suitable for the goals you yourself have selected. So...
DANI: Yes. Did you know...real quick, did you notice when you took your break last year, did it permanently change your habits going forward?
KATY: Yeah. I mean the only reason I've come back is because I haven't quite figured out the work equation. I've had to literally restrain myself multiple times from heaving my phone into the river. Like, I know, like my intuition, my natural response to how I feel when I am, like, getting real close up to how I feel with my thing is to heave it away from me.
KATY: But why I don't is because of "oh, what if the uh, the uh..." You have all of these other reasons but my gut is telling me to throw it away. My intuition is telling me to throw it away. My critical thinking is telling me to throw it away. All systems are like, get rid of this. And so that's why it's time.
DANI: Yes. And even if you don't throw it away, it's just even reducing or changing that habit from a break is very helpful.
DANI: Since last July my usage has been down so much because I understand how good it felt. I never really went back to the same level.
KATY: Well I think there are moderators and there are abstainers. And clearly, if I got rid of my couch, I am not a moderate kind of person. It's easier for me to abstain so I just, like, I can see that that's actually the best solution for me. Because it works well with my personality type.
DANI: Oh yeah.
KATY: We went on vacation to an odd place where there was no ... we went backpacking. And a lot of places that we backpack, I am lucky here because a lot of times my cell phone doesn't work when I go away for the weekend. So that's great, right? Those are always just engagement with nature and family and I don't have to worry about my phone being an issue because it doesn't work. But I pack, and I was like, but I ... see here, this is a stack your life, I couldn't imagine how I could take pictures of these beautiful hikes, just for ourselves, you know to show our family when we came back, not for posting. I couldn't imagine how to do that if my phone didn't work and I was like, "Oh yeah, remember those things? Cameras?
KATY: Yeah, and so like I had posted a picture on social media of like these crazy items that I was taking and someone was like, "Is that a camera?" And I was like, "Yeah, it's a digital camera." It's a high-tech thing that has become obsolete because everyone basically has a camera in their eyeball attached to their hand.
DANI: That's funny, I actually dug mine out three months ago.
KATY: Yes. Because you can take it with you. I've found my original iPod from 11 years ago that doesn't do anything except for play music. So now I have found this pile of technology that has become obsolete because of this new thing. Yet when I have the new thing that is many things, it's like a swiss army knife, with so many things, I find myself using the things that I didn't intend to use. Like I might want to listen to music but there's texts coming through. Oh, I gotta check my email anyway. Oh, I'm walking I should take a picture.
KATY: When you have so many options it's almost worse. It leads you to behaving in a way that you wouldn't have chosen had you not had it. So it's like, I can totally downgrade, again air quotes, I can "downgrade" to my, what was amazing technology 5 years ago. Like I can downgrade to those expensive, you know, environment costing items. And they're everywhere because they're obsolete and cheap. So I've just been playing around with paper maps, digital cameras, old iPods - my Nano iPod from when I was 28.
DANI: I love it. That's awesome. Well, this was fun and I'm excited to hear how this progresses as we go on. Let's see, it is May. Where you gonna be?
KATY: Well, that's interesting. Part of what I'm going to be doing going forward in my way of doing less teaching via social media online is to start teaching more in person. Old school style for me. Like to figure out a way to actually connect and teach person to person. So I'll be doing a lot more of that for the next few years than I have in the last few years. Where I will be in May is Austin. I'll be at PaleoFx and then probably one other book signing. As soon as I have details I'll let you guys know. Seattle in September. Ancestral Health Symposium. And then Ancestral Health Symposium New Zealand. I'm going to New Zealand. And I'm sure I'll do other things in New Zealand as well.
KATY: That's in October. Well, I meant teaching things. Like clearly we'll be doing other things in New Zealand.
DANI: Yeah, but no, that's a big flight so you should be able to reach as many people as you're able to.
KATY: It's a long flight and a big country and we're actually contemplating staying there. We're actually contemplating staying there for like a month if we can work out, I'm looking for if anyone knows...this is a great way to use a podcast ... if anyone knows of a nature school or a nature program or an outdoor program where in New Zealand where we could bring to for a month's period of time and if they would allow... it's kind of hard...
DANI: Isn't that just New Zealand?
KATY: Well it is but you know like there's us, the parents, and we'll definitely be doing a lot of that but they really, they need their own community and two adults isn't the most nutritious for them 100 percent of the time, so some time for them to be with other children, I think, would make a month or a month plus be better for them.
KATY: So, please tweet me or text me or write it in the sky. Send me a letter.
DANI: Sooner rather than later.
KATY: Send me a mail. Actually, write it in the mail and send it to my P.O. Box and let me know. And I have until October. Ok. So that's it. And I'll see you all hopefully very soon. And am I gonna see you very soon in person?
DANI: I don't know.
KATY: Come on!
DANI: It'd be nice
KATY: Come on!
DANI: And if anybody wants any of these weening yourself or prepping tips you can visit my blog at MoveYourBodyBetter.com and I have all the tips listed there from last year. So just go to the blog and find them.
KATY: Go there right away.
DANI: Go there right now.
KATY: Thank you, Dani. You're awesome as always.
DANI: So are you.
KATY: Thank you all for listening. For more information, books, and online exercise classes, photos of every instance of my life you can find me at Nutritious Movement.com and that's a portal for all social media and blogs and books and stuff and you can find more from Dani Hemmat, I'm trying to think of something clever to say for you. Like it's just like, the zombie apocalypse I have a good zombie story but I'm not going to tell you right now I'll tell you later. You can find more from Dani Hemmat at MoveYourBodyBetter.com. Tips and also Instagram. She's on Instagram. What's your daily walk now? What are you at now? Hundred and for...
DANI: It's a lot. I haven't tallied in a long time. I tally about once a month. But it's pretty good. I front-loaded early so that when I had days where I couldn't I didn't feel so bad.
KATY: Like you would do double walks you mean?
DANI: Yeah or more. A walk and a half. And now I'm like a puppy, I just crave it all the time. Gotta get out gotta get out.
KATY: You are like a puppy. I've seen you wiggle. All right, find Dani Hemmat at MoveYourBodyBetter.com and we will see you soon.
VOICE OVER: Hopefully you find the general information in this podcast informative and helpful. But it is not intended to replace medical advice and should not be used as such.