Digital Wellness Movie Recommendation: The Social Dilemma

Last year, I watched The Social Dilemma, a documentary film that paints an alarming picture of how technology and social media shape our lives, on Netflix. The film features interviews with tech professionals including former Google, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest employees who discuss the risks technology and social media bring to our emotional and physical well-being, mental health, human rights, freedom, and democracy. Watch the trailer below.

Given the fact the film was released in the midst of a global pandemic, mass mobilizations for racial justice, a major U.S. presidential election, and a new socially distant school year, I think it is a MUST SEE! Why?

1) Because our society’s dependence on technology for connection, education, health and social services, consumer shopping, news, and entertainment has expanded tremendously.

2) Because the tech companies and social media platforms have a lot power, are not heavily regulated, and if left unchecked, can hurt our emotional and physical well-being, mental health, freedom, human rights, and democracy. Medical News Today addressed the following negative physical, emotional, and mental health effects of technology in a February 2020 article:

-Physical Health: eyestrain, poor posture (neck and back pain), poor brain development in children and teens, lack of sleep, and a sedentary lifestyle that reduces physical activity and contributes to obesity, cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and a premature death; and

-Emotional and Mental Health: anxiety, depression, isolation, loss of focus, digital distraction, and tech overload

Read the Digital Detox’s blog post, The 19 Negative Effects of Technology in 2019. Also, check out the Pew Research Center 2020 Survey that reported 64% of Americans thought social media had a mostly negative effect on the way things in the U.S.

After watching the film, I took a hard look at my digital life and habits and decided to recommit to my own digital wellness. I recommend you watch the film on Netflix this weekend or later this month. May it inspire you to use digital wellness practices to transform how you use technology and social media this year.

Need more help with digital wellness?

Visit the Thriving Mindfully Academy here for digital wellness resources.

Need coaching or training support for yourself and/or company or organization? Head on over to Ananda Leeke Consulting to learn how we can work together this year.

Mindful Technology: Listen to Ananda Leeke’s Interview on Technology for Mindfulness Podcast


Check out my Technology for Mindfulness podcast interview (53.55 minutes) about my mindfulness journey for the past 25 years, mindful technology, and how the power of one’s breath and the practice of mindfulness can help outsmart stress with Robert Plotkin, founder of Technology for Mindfulness, engineer, and long-time mindfulness practitioner.

During the interview, I share tips on how to cope with stress in the workplace based on self-care lessons I learned from my early career in finance and best practices from my work with clients as a mindfulness yoga teacher and reiki practitioner. I also share how I used mindfulness, meditation, yoga, and journaling to overcome stress caused by failing the bar exam eight times as a young lawyer. You can also listen to the podcast interview on YouTube.


Celebrate National Meditation Month & Join #ThrivingMindfully 31-Day Challenge (May 1-31)


Need more mindfulness in your life?

Join the #ThrivingMindfully 31-Day Challenge to incorporate more mindful living, creativity, and technology moments in your life. It starts May 1st and is self-directed. That means you do it at your own pace.

Here’s how the #ThrivingMindfully 31-Day Challenge works. There are 31 #ThrivingMindfully podcast episodes that include guided meditations, breathing exercises, short talks, tips, and resources. They are divided into three sections: mindful living, creativity, and technology. Follow the steps below to access the podcasts.

Step 1: Each day go to the #ThrivingMindfully Soundcloud page and click on the #ThrivingMindfully 31-Day Challenge playlist.

  • Mindful Living: Listen to episodes 1-15, 29
  • Mindful Creativity: Listen to episodes 16-21, 30
  • Mindful Technology: Listen to episodes 22-28, 31

Step 2: Select the podcast episode for Day #1, #2, #3 etc. and listen to it. You can also choose to listen to a podcast that resonates with you. Make the challenge your own. Take what you need and leave the rest behind.

Step 3: Practice the breathing, meditation, and reflections exercise(s) throughout your day and/or week.

Step 4: Join the A Mindful Cup of Tea Facebook Group and share your experiences with others.


Join me for “Breathe & Meditate,” a free Facebook Live series, on May 1st, 13th, 20th, and 27th from 7 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. EST: Each morning I will guide you through three short meditations and offer tips on how to create mindful living moments in your daily life.

If you live or visit the DC area in May, consider joining me for two #ThrivingMindfully Meetup Group events on May 19 and May 21. Go here for more details.

Looking for mindfulness-inspired books to read? Check out my three books on Amazon: yoga-inspired novel Love’s Troubadours, mindful creativity memoir That Which Awakens Me, and mindful technology memoir Digital Sisterhood.


My online offerings and events are offered as a gift. If they have blessed you, I invite you to show gratitude by supporting my work with a donation on PayPal or with the Cash app: or$AnandaLeeke. Thank you for your generosity. It is deeply appreciated!

Women’s History Month: Celebrating My Womanline

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Women’s History Month gives me a chance to celebrate the women in my family that have inspired me. I call them my womanline. They include my mother, Theresa Gartin Leeke; grandmothers, Dorothy Mae Johnson Gartin and Frederica Stanley Roberts Leeke; and great grandmothers, Iona Bolden Johnson King and Florida Jones Leeke. Who are the women in your family that inspire you?

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In the first chapter of my tech memoir, Digital Sisterhood, I write about what my womanline’s digital footprint would look like if they had access to the Internet and social media. Listen to an excerpt (from 2013). Read the full chapter here. My book is available on Amazon (e-book, paperback, and hardback).

Listen to Digital Sisterhood excerpts read by yours truly (from 2013)!

Here are two more audio recordings (from 2013) about the book.

Digital & Tech Professionals Apply for Presidential Innovation Fellowship

Happy #InternetGeek Tuesday!

Today, I’m encouraging digital and tech professionals interested in serving the U.S. Government to apply for the Presidential Innovation Fellowship. It’s a great way to give back, grow, and make America’s technology in government better. Click on the link for more details:

Happy Internet Geek Tuesday – Part 1 Recap of Blogalicious Tech Summit


Happy Internet Geek Tuesday!

Last week, I attended the Blogalicious Tech Summit held at the Microsoft Innovation and Policy Center in Washington, D.C.  Guess what Microsoft had? A Technology Bar for attendees to preview Microsoft products! What an Internet Geek treat!

Ananda at Blogalicious Tech Summit at Microsoft
Ananda at Blogalicious Tech Summit at Microsoft

Technology Bar
Technology Bar

Stacey Ferguson (a/k/a Justice Fergie), Blogalicious Chief Curator and Co-Founder, welcomed us all and introduced Stephanie Peters, Director of Federal Government Affairs for Microsoft. Peters talked about how powerful Blogalicious is as a community and the many ways it supports its members. I totally agreed!

Stacey Ferguson
Stacey Ferguson

Stephanie Peters
Stephanie Peters

Dr. Mark Drapeau, Director of Innovative Engagement for Microsoft, gave a keynote address on “Avoiding Mediocrity.” My key takeaway from Drapeau’s address was create outstanding content that is fun, entertaining, surprising, valuable, and simple to read.

Mark Drapeau
Mark Drapeau

Allissa Richardson, Bowie State University professor, journalist, and founder of MOJO Mediaworks, LLC, was truly my favorite presenter. I am biased too because she is a 2012 Digital Sister of the Year and a personal shero! Richardson discussed the five elements of building your mobile platform. The elements include:

  • Choice: Be the best source of high quality content and information.
  • Conversation: Start and maintain a dialogue that is meaningful and informative.
  • Creation: Make your own media to establish yourself as a thought leader.
  • Curation: Sift through media a lot to highlight the best content your audience will appreciate.
  • Collaboration: Build smart partnerships.

She shared some tools for making audio recordings and podcasts like Audioboo, a mobile app I have downloaded to my phone. She also recommended that we try using SproutSocial to schedule our social media posts and tweets. She uses this tool instead of Hootsuite. I downloaded the SproutSocial app to my phone and will try it out starting in May.

Allissa Richardson
Allissa Richardson

NOTE: Tomorrow, I will post another blog about the Blogalicious Tech Summit. It was so juicy that it deserves two blog posts!