I often write about mindful practice as it relates to life, as well as my own practices and teaching about mindful studio practice. (I created the Mindful Studio Practice Scholarship in 2015.)
In alignment with mindful studio practice, my one-week Innernet course is something worth looking at. You can register here and download the course packet I created.
Even if you cannot (or don't need to) unplug, you'll still benefit from tuning into the two LIVE teleseminar calls that I will be doing as part of the course.
Here's some in-depth feedback about the Innernet from the inaugural class in June 2015:
- "In the midst of anything but routine days, Abbey keeps me honest to stay away from distractions... time always expands for me without 'media'...for that reason alone it is great. Thanks for 'holding space.'" ~SL, painter
- "My husband encouraged to take the Innernet because I haven't been as focused on the daily routine of writing as I should be. I was allowing the internet to "interrupt" my process all day long and I wondered if I would be able to do without the constant communication and connection.
Since taking the Innernet, I'm on the internet and texting less. I have been able to sit and focus on writing more faithfully. In the past, successful and productive writing occurred when I carved out blocks of uninterrupted hours each day. I'd lost that habit.
I see myself at the center of an invisible sphere that extends outward. While unplugged, the sphere became much smaller, and the sensation was twofold. On the one hand, I felt less connected to the world. My daily habit is to read the NYTimes online, and being unable to do that left me feeling out of touch with the world, which I didn't like. On the other hand, I was much more in tune with the world I was taking in with my 5 senses and more fully connected to the people right in front of me. This second sensation was far more powerful and pleasant than the first.
Since taking the Innernet, I know that I can 'quit' anytime I want. :) Additionally, it has reaffirmed my belief that depth of knowledge is far more valuable and satisfying that breadth. Or rather--spending significant time on any one pursuit rather than spreading one's time across many leads to deeper, more permanent connections to the world. It takes time to really see beauty and to understand your fellow man. If we allow the Internet and other techno-distractions to intrude on us at any time, we lose the ability to think deeply, to relate deeply.
The Innernet is eye-opening in many ways. I think many people are addicted to technology but don't realize the extent to which this is true for them or the negative effects of the "habit." It allows us a different perspective on daily living. It's reconnecting with a quieter, more meditative world we once knew but have forgotten." ~KK, writer/author
- "The Innernet was more then just going off line; it’s loving and supportive with encouragement and helpful information. I really did enjoy it and people were very curious about what I was doing which was also fun!
It took me two days to be able to relax and not be anxious about not being online in case I missed something. I really appreciated and enjoyed the course packet Abbey provided. It entertained my mind instead of reaching for the computer. The first day I was mind-boggled by the brilliant colors in a patch of flowers outside, I couldn’t get that off my mind all day! The third day was my perfect day! I got up, did some yard work, a little house work then went to my studio and started sketching. It was a very satisfying schedule for me and wonderful! I did 50 small people sketches (nothing complete or perfect but for me it felt good).
What changes have I noticed in my life: I loved the Malcolm Gladwell chapter (The Roseta Story) in the course packet. When I paint now it will be all me, I won’t go on line to see how others did it, or to learn from others like I did soo much before. When I went back online I could feel the difference, I enjoy being off line so much more.
In the beginning I was very anxious. I don’t feel so overwhelmed anymore. My pace is healthier. Life has changed for me but I’m very grateful for my husband and all I’ve had and that which is to come. Abbey told us in the first teleseminar that somehow we can do it all and I’m finding out this is true.
The best part of the course was being off line! Also, reading Abbey's material and doing some of the suggestions and listening to Abbey speak and answer questions during the teleseminars was calming and helpful. Even setting up an email auto reply was new and fun!" ~CJR, painter
- "I was so moved while downloading the Innernet Official Course Packet. It is a perfect accompaniment and it's very apparent and actually palpable the loving and poetic way Abbey put together the pieces of herself that she shared. It provides food for thought and some direction for the quiet moments. It is a kind of lifeline to get you through the initial moment of panic. Thanks again for offering this course at a time when we all need to be reminded that the place where we will find ourselves is in the quiet moments. I would take this course anytime Abbey offered it!" ~KP
- "I was not sure if the course was designed for someone like me. I have a computer in my studio and feel that i use it pretty much for correspondence, music, and some shopping. After The Innernet course, I noticed that I use the computer way more than I expected. By not using it for 4 days, I found myself very reluctant to go back to some of my former habits. I actually used the computer a lot more for surfing....other artist's works, how to ideas, etc. I think going through this process with Abbey made me turn inward for that kind of "entertainment." This is a very positive outcome, because now that I am of couple of months away, I am definitely more aware when I overuse the computer.
I would recommend this course to someone who relies heavily on technology...... and those who think they may not. Trust me, if you are on the computer some of the time, you are probably on the computer more time that you think. It was great to step back and look at my habits. By so doing, I actively try to limit my quest for wasting time by not going to the computer."
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