Mastering Mindfulness in the Age of Digital Distraction with Dan Goldfield
We welcomed Dan Goldfield to one of our #ChampTalks series over a Twitter Space. He studied monk for five years, meditated for 29,366 hours, and is on a mission to normalize the well-being of 1 billion & 1 people. Here’s a summary from Twitter Space of his insights and experiences.
Mansoor: Why don’t we get started with an introduction?
Dan Goldfield: Hi, My name is Dan Goldfield. I have been practicing mindfulness for seven or eight years due to the heavy stress in my life. I have been able to help my family members out when they hit hard times, and his mindfulness teacher encouraged him to start working with more people. In 2019, I met my wife, who is a neuropsychologist, and we compared notes. This process led to something that withstood the scrutiny of both ancient traditions and modern science.
And so, at that point, I finally felt ready to come out publicly and start sharing what I had to teach. And here we are.
Mansoor: How would you define mindfulness if we draw a comparison to meditation?
Dan Goldfield: Mindfulness is seeing clearly, while meditation dedicates distraction-free time to that practice. Reflection is necessary for the beginning when we have been trained into faulty ways of seeing, but it is never required. The goal is to cut through and see things as they are, accept them, and find the fundamental okayness.
Mansoor: How do you cut these things down to achieve that level of clarity?
Dan Goldfield: The most important details of the phrases true nature, classical meditation, and TikTok involve our potential to see things just as they are without our interpretations, judgments, and biases. In classical meditation, there is the potential for us to rest as the awareness that our true nature is present in each of the different circumstances. Digital minimalism involves reducing the use of TikTok from one’s information diet. This can be done by curating your feed or cutting out content entirely. The goal is to find healthy content on TikTok and follow select accounts that discuss mindfulness and meditation.
The most critical details in this text are that experimentation is vital to breaking an addiction to social media. Some people may need an intervention, such as giving their device away or putting stakes on it. Additionally, some people may like to play around with deleting apps from their phones, but they can also reinstall them later.
Neha K.: How can technology be used to support a mindful life?
Dan Goldfield: Mindfulness is an important topic, and many mindfulness and meditation apps are available on the App Store and Play Store. Insight Timer is one of the best options, allowing teachers to become teachers and upload their content. There are over 70 talks available for free on Insight Timer, and other apps such as Waking Up, Calm, and Headspace can help people to fill the void left by deleting Instagram.
Neha K: When you wake up, what do you tend to check first?
Dan Goldfield: I wake up in the morning and begin by making green tea and taking it outside. After that, they start writing tweets off the platform. Recently, they have been working on building back up their backlog and launched a Mindfulness cohort course. This has caused them to burn through their scheduled tweets and create three daily, which is not the ideal way to run things. Social Champ wants to ensure its content is available daily, so they have a long list of scheduled tweets that will go out regardless of the internet or illness. The author is detoxing and is working on building up a backlog of content, such as newsletters, courses, and website copy.
Neha K: What role does self-discipline play in staying mindful in the digital world?
Dan Goldfield: Great question, Neha. Self-discipline is an integral part of life, and I have experienced periods of intense self-discipline and periods of intense self-allowing. As my mindfulness practice deepened, I decided to run an experiment to explore what would happen if they did nothing. With self-discipline, the investigation was successful in deep relaxation for six months, spending time with my wife and friends, reading, watching videos, etc. My mindfulness practice had already developed, and their need for gratification decreased, allowing them to float without getting into bad habits. However, what happened afterward was interesting.
I am a mindfulness teacher who used to teach music and was supported by the UK government during the pandemic. I’m now questioning if he will ever do anything again, as the lockdowns have no ending suggests writing about the topics they discuss on calls, and he recommends using different platforms online. The most critical details in this text are that I began to write and record talks for the Insight Timer app and that they used Twitter as a platform to find new friends the way of speaking. They also found people who are just starting or intermediate with a mindfulness practice, and by launching a course four weeks ago, I have been able to exit their other work and come on full-time to serve more people.
Mansoor: How can people fall off that path and into consumption traps?
Dan Goldfield: Experienced in mindfulness and running a course, I sought to explore how people can fall into consumption traps. I mentioned self-discipline, which highlighted the importance of self-discipline. We are increasing general satisfaction by focusing on healthy habits such as exercising and eating well. This shift has helped students forget their addiction to smoking.
Neha K: How do you balance staying informed versus being overwhelmed by news and notifications?
Dan Goldfield: I want to take our news from. We must decide who we want to take notice of and our understanding of what’s happening around us. The speaker needs to consume more information and remove themselves from the consumer mindset. They only click on news articles when they need an answer.
Neha K: How do you stay connected to people meaningfully without sacrificing your well-being and mindfulness?
Dan Goldfield: The most critical details in this text are that I only follow people who have proven themselves to be someone they want to stay connected with based on mutual benefit. I also set up a discord server for mindfulness-based creators, which was used to share links to their posts and help each other out with engagement. However, as their organic reach has improved, I have had less and less reason to pull their efforts and try to give one another a boost. Therefore, the author is glad that the discord server still connects them and can do whatever makes sense for the rest of us.
Mansoor: Let’s take a question from one of our listeners.
Guest Speaker: Mindfulness is a state that arises when attention is focused continuously, creating a continuous flow of attention towards one chosen object. It is essential to decide what environments we focus on to reduce the age of digital distraction. The speaker has yet to gain much experience with mindfulness but has studied Esoteric Yogic traditions for many years. Mindfulness is a state of being entirely focused on an object or experience, which can lead to profound insights into any occasion. It is a science and art of being indestructible and consciously choosing how to direct and maintain awareness. I was curious about how someone practices mindfulness in studio mode and daily life and what results they expect from working that way.
Dan Goldfield: I have experimented with various formal practices, including those shared by Patanyali. Through these experiments, they have struggled to figure out which is best, similar to the unique predicaments of 2023, due to access to so many different presentations of wisdom and definitions of the word meditation. This struggle has become a common trap among students and their peers in finding the best teaching. I realized that the root of all these teachings is a fundamental okayness, our default mode. This okayness is available to all of us right now, and all we must do is recognize it and recognize who we are. This okayness is also known as enlightenment, awakening, liberation, and awareness. Awareness is the basis of all experiences, but it is never phased or harmed by them. As we learn to recognize this, formal meditation practices can help us realize that we are beyond harm.
This recognition of who we are as an awareness is stable, but the chaotic and rapidly changing phenomena of life have ceased to be dramatic. We are at rest in all circumstances.
We want to express our sincere appreciation to Dan for imparting his wisdom on the positive impact of mindfulness and meditation.
In case you missed it, you can tune in to the complete session below: