The holiday season is a time when we definitely want to disconnect and be more mindful about how we spend our time. It also serves as a great reminder that technology is actually wonderful! Intentional, conscious use of technology can enrich our lives, bringing us closer to our loved ones – especially at this time of year.
With that in mind, we have come up with some gift suggestions that will help bring more joy, fun, creativity, and good habits in 2022 and beyond!
These gifts have been inspired by our community and our team, we hope you like them!
Author Brandon Stosuy (co-founder of The Creative Independent) taps into a diverse network of working artists to provide perspective on how creativity can be prioritized among the other demands on your time. Posing a series of questions on the themes of defining work-life balance, forming daily rituals, setting intentions, meeting goals, and taking time off from creativity, this book provides an inspiring framework for building your own creative process and using your time meaningfully.
In this first novel by Kikuko Tsumura to be published in English, a young woman walks into an employment agency and requests a job that has the following traits: it is close to her home, and it requires no reading, no writing – and ideally, very little thinking. As she moves from job to job, writing bus adverts for shops that mysteriously disappear, and composing advice for rice cracker wrappers that generate thousands of devoted followers, it becomes increasingly apparent that she’s not searching for the easiest job at all, but something altogether more meaningful…
Pamela Paul, editor of The New York Times Book Review, presents a captivating record, enlivened with illustrations, of the world before cyberspace—from voicemails to blind dates to punctuation to civility. There are the small losses: postcards, the blessings of an adolescence largely spared of documentation, the Rolodex, and the genuine surprises at high school reunions. But there are larger repercussions, too: weaker memories, the inability to entertain oneself, and the utter demolition of privacy. A swan song for a disappearing era and, perhaps, a guide to reclaiming just a little bit more of the world IRL.
Longtime friend of Freedom Christina Crook’s latest book began by her pondering on why, exactly, the whole world had taken up baking bread during the pandemic. She realized that we were seeking out creative contributions to make meaning in the midst of global upheaval. We learned to play instruments. Checked on neighbors. Volunteered. Planted gardens. Wrote letters. We began noticing and nurturing the relationships and activities that bring meaning and joy. We took up good burdens.
Being idle brings untold benefits both to individuals and to the planet. But how do you do it? Doing nothing is actually quite tricky, because the world is always telling you to be busy. Tom Hodgkinson brings you 24 easy ways to do nothing, from keeping a diary to sitting on a bench. These idling tricks can be done here and now, by nearly anyone, and for little or no cost. Follow the simple steps in An Idler’s Manual and you’ll find that anxiety will evaporate, your life will become more enjoyable, and you’ll start to live well, just as Epicurus intended.
In this follow-up to her hit book, How to Break Up with Your Phone, Catherine Price makes the case that True Fun—which she defines as the magical confluence of playfulness, connection, and flow—is absolutely essential for a well-lived and joyful life. Weaving together scientific research with personal experience, Price reveals the surprising mental, physical, and cognitive benefits of fun, and offers a practical, personalized plan for how we can achieve better screen/life balance and attract more True Fun into our daily lives—without feeling overwhelmed.
Joanna Rakoff’s 2014 memoir of her time working as assistant to the literary agent for J. D. Salinger is a charming coming-of-age tale of a young writer trying to square romantic aspirations with burgeoning self-awareness, that will take you right back to the days before email and instant messaging infiltrated our every waking moment!
Kate Northrup’s unique planner is based on a system she created that prioritizes managing your energy over your time. It has annual, monthly, seasonal, weekly, and daily practices that keep me calm, grounded, and productive. Use the yearly, seasonal, monthly, weekly, daily, and moon pages to fit more of yourself into your days so you can have more by doing less. The perfect gift for the busy mom in your life!
Based on the experience of its inventor, himself a chronic insomniac, Dodow helps you to control your breath and fall asleep faster. Based on practices such as meditation, yoga, Sophrology, and cardiac coherence, the device can help you wind down and control the flow of your thoughts while slowing your breathing to help soothe the autonomic nervous system and ease into a restful night.
Muse 2 is a multi-sensor meditation device that provides real-time feedback on your brain activity, heart rate, breathing, and body movements to help you build a consistent meditation practice, which can lead to improved focus and clarity through the day, and better emotional regulation.
Stolp is a nifty little radiation-free Faraday cage that can hold up to 6 smartphones. Once you choose to fully close it, you are fully unplugged. No signal will come in, nor out. A great visual reminder to unplug and break with the habit of ‘always on’, this is great for family dinner times, bedtimes, and other occasions where you want to be fully present.
The Glow light is designed to cue your body for bed and help wake you up gently. The warm light gradually dims to softly lull you to sleep so you can doze off without interruptions, while in the mornings it wakes you up gently by filling the room with soft light for an easy morning rise.
Hatch Restore combines a sound machine, sunrise alarm, smart light, meditation app, and an alarm clock into one smart sleep assistant. Program your own smart sleep routine to help you wind down, sleep through the night, and wake up refreshed and choose from an expandable library of meditations and sleep stories to calm your mind.
14 Ember mug
If you’re one of those people who always let your coffee go cold, you need to add this temperature-controlled mug to your wish list! Ember’s patented technology allows you to set the precise temperature of your hot beverage, so you can enjoy your drink from the first sip to the last drop.
The perfect accompaniment to our free Coffee Shop Sounds!
For the runner or sportsperson in your life, Therabody offers a range of percussive therapy devices which deliver a targeted deep muscle treatment to melt away tension, soreness, and stress in seconds. Use alongside the Therabody app, which learns from your real-time activity and behaviors, integrating with Apple Health and Google Fit to recommend guided, personalized wellness routines.
This recommendation comes courtesy of our Director of Engineering Damir, who recently completed his first marathon! 💪
Bagby Social is a smart solution to help you enjoy more screen-free time. The hanging multi-pocket organizer is mindfully designed for family moments and social gatherings to help you reduce your screen time. Great for device-free family dinners, an unplugged brunch with friends, or to keep kids’ phones out of sight during homework time.
The perfect gift for outdoor types, Sidetracked Magazine is an online and printed journal featuring personal stories of adventure travel, journeys, and expeditions. The concept is simple: to capture the emotion and experience of adventures and expeditions throughout the world… and to inspire.
18 The Idler Academy
The Idler Academy of Philosophy, Husbandry, and Merriment aims to help you slow down, have fun and live well with its selection of over 60 courses taught by various different experts. From how to grow your own vegetables to how to write poetry, to the secret life of trees, there is something for every curious mind here!
The price also includes a subscription to The Idler Magazine, a tote bag, a copy of An Idler’s Manual, and access to back issues and the digital archive.
Originally designed for cooking, the Time Cube became a worldwide hit and is used for exercising, homework, daily chores, and even power naps. It also helps you to time block with ease and focus on your work. This bamboo version is specifically designed with 5, 10, 20, and 25-minute intervals making it the perfect partner to use alongside the Pomodoro Technique.
And of course, for the person who has everything, nothing can beat giving the gift of Freedom – you’re basically gifting time – and nothing is more precious than that!