Sometimes I go to DeskHub to commune with other humans.

As a freelance travel writer based in San Diego, I work almost exclusively from home. Sometimes, I’ll pop into my co-working space in the Little Italy neighborhood. It’s one of my favorite corners of the city to eat and caffeinate but mostly, I post up at my dining table. It’s located equidistant from my fridge (gotta eat) and living room (aka my gym as of late). In other words, working from home is incredibly convenient. As exciting and tasty as the destinations I’m lucky to visit are, I personally enjoy returning home to a predictable environment after checking out Nashville’s music scene or Brussel’s art deco architecture for example.

That’s why I’m a big fan of online streaming workouts that prioritize technique and flowy choreography, like Barre3 online’s movement method that hones in on alignment, posture and personalized intensity. I also like that it gives me a curated workout playlist so I don’t have to search for a workout, though I do save and replay my favorites if I’m not into the selected workout of the day.

Body, Breath, Beats 21-Day Yoga Challenge

Update March 24, 2020: This morning, I received an email from Wanderlust announcing they are now offering free access to Wanderlust TV for 30 days.

Update March 23, 2020: The challenge has ended and you now have to pay for the yoga challenge below, however there are many fitness brands and studios offering limited-time free classes, or at the very least two-week free trials (string a bunch of them together and you’ve got a few months’ worth of free at-home workouts.) For example, CorePower yoga, Y6 yoga, Obé fitness are offering free classes/free trials online or within their apps. Others like Equinox are streaming free live fitness and meditation classes on social media, and so are health publications like Women’s Health; currently, they’ve got a rotation of guest instructors on Instagram Live.

This month though, I’m adding some of these yoga videos from Wanderlust’s Body, Breath, Beats 21-day yoga challenge. It actually began yesterday (March 4), though each of the 21 videos will be accessible for five days after it goes live. You can also sign up by email for free to get the videos delivered straight to your inbox this month. I have a feeling I’ll enjoy this series as each video focuses on a specific element of a solid yoga practice––breathing, side body work, an entire video dedicated to hip opening poses, and they’re all set to some dreamy instrumental tunes.

UPDATE: After flowing through the first two videos, as someone who has been practicing yoga on and off for a number of years I am finding the verbal cuing a bit fast. However, I do appreciate the constant reminders to take full inhales and exhales. I also like that the flows are no more than 25 minutes, just long enough to stretch out and reset before getting back to my computer.

Sign up for the free 21-day yoga challenge

Digital Wellness

On a similar note, ever since I attended a Wanderlust panel on digital wellness (when did instant become urgent?) at their inaugural Wellspring event in Palm Springs last year––think if TED talks collided with Wanderlust’s yoga lifestyle programming––I’ve been hyper aware of my relationship with technology. Since then, I started listening to WNYC’s Note to Self podcast (about our relationship with technology), and then read host Manoush Zomorodi’s book Bored and Brilliant: How Spacing Out Can Unlock Your Most Productive Self. Twice. The book makes the science-backed case for reclaiming boredom. In these modern, super plugged in times boredom seems synonymous with offline time.

The benefits of being bored though, like really letting your mind wander without a screen in front of you? Science says it can make you more creative and a better critical thinker, which are two essential skills I need to stay afloat in a highly volatile media industry. And since my creativity is my main money maker, I’ll do anything to protect it.

Since then, I’ve taken several actions to help manage the amount of time I spend online and give my brain a break. While I might like the idea of a total digital detox more than actually executing one (because again, freelance life means that Every. Day. I’m. Hustling), I have made progress on bookending no-tech time after a certain hour…though does it count if I hit the Netflix after logging off? Other things I’ve implemented that were inspired by Bored and Brilliant include reconfiguring my phone notifications (basically, turning most of them off so I can determine when I want to be interrupted, not the other way around) and keeping my phone in my purse (instead of my hand) while puttering around. It’s a work in progress, obviously. And a perpetual one, probably.

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