What happened to the simple things? Things like staring off in space, hearing nothing but the sounds of the leaves whistling in the trees and sipping a hot cup of black tea. While I definitely can’t complain about all the conveniences technology has brought (including the new Kindle my husband’s bought), I do feel out of sorts when I’m too connected to the outside world and disconnected from simplicity. And it seems that the more time I spend plugging into the online world, the harder it is for me relax when I am away.

Yesterday, for example, I spent the day biking. I was surrounded in nature. There was nothing but the ground below me, trees around me and the deep blue sky above me. Yet, I couldn’t shake away my thoughts. My brain seemed to be downloading new information on topics to blog, people I needed to contact, books I still needed to read. Here I was doing the very thing I loved the most and I could not relax. In a sense, I couldn’t seem to let go of where I was earlier that day, so that I could be present in what I was doing in that moment. I felt my mind shouting loudly, “You’re missing out!” I knew that if I didn’t let go of the past, I’d be sacrificing the experience I was having now.

That’s why I was excited to read our top five posts for this week. Our bloggers are putting perspective on things like the distractions of modern life and on letting go of one moment so that we can begin a new one. So read up! Then do yourself a favor and unplug so you can spend the last month of summer enjoying the simple things in life.

Why Endings are Really Beginnings: Tao Te Ching

(Mindfulness & Psychotherapy) – This is more than about how when one door closes, another one opens. This is about how every moment offers opportunities for you to be present and make choices from a place of awareness instead of doing what we always do-work from a state of autopilot. Read this and choose wisely.

‘Black  and White Thinking’: How to Balance these Cognitive Extremes

(The Therapist Within) – Are you a black or white thinker? Or do you prefer shades of grey? It’s easier than you think to be a grey thinker. How so? Instead of perceiving your life/job/partner, etc. to be all good or bad, why not incorporate both into your life? Think of them as co-existing parts helping you grow even closer to the truth.

Distraction: A Serious Problem of Modern Life

(World of Psychology) – Remember The Matrix? The one where Keanu Reeves’s character had to decide which pill to take? The red pill gets us closer to the truth and the blue one numbs us to it? This popular post reminds me of that and how modern life and all its gadgets are going to either bring us closer or further detach us from reality and from each other.

Body Image, The Perils of Perfectionism & What to Do

(Weightless) – Perfectionism can lead to procrastination and self-destruction especially when it comes to how we perceive our bodies. But thankfully there are ways to counterattack those perfectionistic thoughts before they wear down your soul. Here are a few helpful tips that’ll get you started.

Felicia Day on Being Creatively Bored and Developing Her Own Project

(The Creative Mind) – Are you constantly bored? You may be like actor, writer and producer Felicia Day, who has a highly creative mind and because of it finds herself creatively bored. Read more about Day and learn why if you’re creatively bored, it’s imperative that you do something about it.