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2938 Dundas Street West
Toronto, ON, M6P 4E7
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Canadian author + speaker Christina Crook communicates about technology, humanity, faith & wonder for audiences and publications throughout the world.

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Christina Crook is the award-winning author of The Joy of Missing Out: Finding Balance in a Wired World, which has made her leading voice on human flourishing in the digital age. 

Through her speaking and writing, she reveals how key shifts in our thinking can enable us to draw closer to one another, taking up the good burdens of local work and responsibilities. She writes about the value of focus, making space to create, and the meaning we find in more limited connections. She challenges the Western values of power, control, and success, revealing how wonder, trust, and discipline are central to the experience of being human and the keys to our joy.

In the game of life, it’s the curious who win. 

Christina Crook

It was Christmas Eve 1993 when John Lloyd awoke to the devastating thought that all he had achieved was worthless. By all outward standards, Lloyd was the picture of success. He was a TV producer and director with homes in London and Oxfordshire which he shared with his wife and three children. Before the age of 40 he had produced some of the most popular comedy shows in Britain and had three BAFTAs - Britain’s Oscars - to show for it. But that Christmas morning, he was flattened by the sense that he didn’t know anything.

“[Lloyd] entered a serious depression, despite knowing he had much to be thankful for,” recounts Ian Leslie in his book, Curious: The Desire to Know and why your Future Depends on It (House of Anansi, 2014.) “Lloyd eschewed some of the popular strategies for coping with male mid-life crisis,” writes Leslie. “Instead, he took time off work, went on long walks and drank whiskey. He also started to read,” something he had never had time for during his previous years of success." 

He dug into Socrates and ancient Athens. He learned about magnetism and light. He had no method or plan, says Leslie, but simply followed his curiosity wherever it took him.


"He was furious that no one had thought to let him in on a secret: the world is incredibly interesting.”   


Lloyd’s exploration was driven by the sheer pleasure of discovery underpinned by his desire to understand nothing less than the meaning of life: “I was really trying to find out, what is the point of me? What is the point of anything?”

A few years later Lloyd pitched a new show to the BBC: QI, a quiz show now loved by millions for its ability to make anything from quantum physics to Aztec architecture both entertaining and interesting. In his pitch to the network executives, Lloyd explained: “There is nothing more important or strange than curiosity.” QI was Lloyd’s crowning jewel, now one of Britain’s most popular and longest running TV series. 

For many adults the flame of curiosity has all but gone out. In fact, some experts say our pure intellectual zeal begins to wane as early as four years old. We hit an equilibrium and quit adding to the store. As a result we have fewer questions and more default settings.    

“This waning curiosity is not necessarily a bad thing,” says Leslie. “It’s essential in becoming a person who can act on the world, rather than one in thrall to it.” But in his study of the inquiring mind he has landed on an essential truth:


In the game of life, it’s the curious who win. 


If you’re paying attention, everything you see and do - from a fire beetle’s underbelly, to the Magna Carta, to a blade of grass - is extraordinary.

A life of pure utility quickly becomes sterile. Embracing JOMO opens up space for curiosity and quiet. You never know where inspiration might strike. 


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Christina Crook is the award-winning author of The Joy of Missing Out: Finding Balance in a Wired World. She has addressed conferences, corporate teams, and universities over the past several years, sharing with them how presence and peace can be found in the midst of the cacophony of the modern world. She’s a personable and engaging speaker who shares her advice in a way that’s relevant and uplifting. Invite her to speak to your team today.


Recommended reading:

 

Bored and Brilliant shows the fascinating side of boredom. Manoush Zomorodi investigates cutting-edge research as well as compelling (and often funny) real-life examples to demonstrate that boredom is actually a crucial tool for making our lives happier, more productive, and more creative. What’s more, the book is crammed with practical exercises for anyone who wants to reclaim the power of spacing out.

Begin Experiencing JOMO with these Five Simple Steps

Christina Crook

Embracing the joy of missing out may seem overwhelming. The deck is stacked against you. You don't know where to start.

I've got you covered.

Here are five simple ideas to put in practice today: 



Name your 3 people.
 

We can only love a few people well. Write down the names of three people you’ll invest in deeply this year. This will clarify how and with whom you spend your time. When it comes to relationships: go deep, not wide.

Unsubscribe.

Unsubscribe from every e-newsletter and coupon saving email that flows through your inbox except those you absolutely love and use. Get them off your radar once and for all. The pennies you save are not work the mental real estate.

Spend the first hour of the day wifi-free.
 

Begin your work day with no wifi. Cut it off. Dig into thinking work early on and take care of minor tasks later. Ride the focused and peaceful momentum for the rest of the day.

Unfollow everyone on Facebook. 

Everyone. It will take about an hour but it will be worth it, we promise. Now, over the next week or so, start reflowing the people you’re thinking about. Those are your people.

Choose a new nighttime ritual. 

Bedtime is the easiest window to lose to social media scrolling. To nip that in the bud, start charging your phone outside the bedroom (you may have to buy an alarm clock.) Now, choose a  new bedtime routine. Read a book, have a bath, or enjoy some other nighttime activity (ahem) to get you ready for a solid night’s sleep. You’ll wake up more refreshed and ready to slay the next day.

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Christina Crook is the award-winning author of The Joy of Missing Out: Finding Balance in a Wired World. She has addressed conferences, corporate teams, and universities over the past several years, sharing with them how presence and peace can be found in the midst of the cacophony of the modern world. She’s a personable and engaging speaker who shares her advice in a way that’s relevant and uplifting. Invite her to speak or facilitate a workshop with your team.

The School of Wonder

Christina Crook

I’m sitting atop a darkened hill conversing over the crackle of a close burning fire silently puffing my first cigar. Earlier that evening I walked on sandaled feet, following the full moon’s glow to the decaying dock. There we shed housecoats and thrust our half-tan bodies into the shallows of the Pacific. It’s mid-summer, a perfectly respectable thing to do: paddling through black waters, the dart of our extremities igniting a symphony of phosphorescence

"There are two kinds of light,” writes humorist James Thurber, “the glow that illuminates and the glare that obscures." He may as well have been writing about the ocean at night. In today's light-polluted world, the beauty of the night can too often be obscured by the glare of businesses dotting the shoreline. But if you look closely, beyond the man-made light, you might see something extraordinary: the quiet glow of bioluminescence.

This naturally-occurring phenomenon affects 20% of marine species. Ocean “phosphorescence” is largely due to the dinoflagellates - plankton - commonly seen at night when the water is disturbed, emitting brief bright light. The flash is designed to startle or divert a predatory crustacean, allowing the cell to escape. For centuries phosphorescence has played an important role in marine navigation, making the shoreline and shoals visible. Light emission may be seen in the wake of a large ship for some 20 miles away.

Those who have experienced the fire of blackened waters might put it more simply: bioluminescence is like swimming with the stars. 

[ UPPERCASE magazine, Fall 2015]


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Christina Crook is the award-winning author of The Joy of Missing Out: Finding Balance in a Wired World. She has addressed conferences, corporate teams, and universities over the past several years, sharing with them how presence and peace can be found in the midst of the cacophony of the modern world. She’s a personable and engaging speaker who shares her advice in a way that’s relevant and uplifting. Invite her to speak to your team today.