MY JOURNEY

the truth is it’s up to us to drive and shape the lives we want for ourselves — no matter how the dynamics around us shift & evolve.

When I began the Website in early 2024, I was expecting that maybe a handful of readers might find its content truly appealing. I even hoped that some of them would feel inspired enough to take on board one or two of its suggestions—but I anticipated that otherwise it would be largely ignored.

Partly this was because of the complex nature of the topic. I created Lifestyle Harmonics to help us navigate the rapidly destabilising contours of the modern world; but at the same time I realised that society is full of scientific theorists, advice columnists and lifestyle gurus—all offering competing formulas for better living.

Nevertheless, satisfaction levels have been through the floor in recent decades and the reasons why are somewhat obscure; so I began to immerse myself in a range of scientific and philosophical literature and pondered what emerged.

James Pic: Angels Landing—Zion National Park
Angels Landing—Zion National Park
James Pic: Looking Out at Bryce Canyon—Utah

Bryce Canyon

James Evening Devon
Salcombe, Devon

I spent much of the lockdown period reading up on psychology and philosophy, self-help and sociology—even venturing into neurobiology and anthropology. These were uncanny times, when my understanding of life was turned upside down.

Many times my research led me to change my assumptions or reconfigure my world view. Pretty soon I knew enough to realise that if I still wanted to create a rich and fulfilling life for myself, there needed to be a complete shift in the paradigm—and Lifestyle Harmonics was born. 

Let’s pause here a moment to make an important point: something that has always struck me when reading about the human condition is how much we cling to balance and how much effort we put into resisting change & sticking to routine. The goal is to maintain an equilibrium between all things.

George Leonard does a great job at explaining how this tendency can prevent us from following through on positive change in his magnum opus: Mastery: The Keys to Success & Long Term Fulfilment.

To step into the field of harmonics, by contrast, is to follow a logic of antagonism: mixing reason with imagination, chaos with order; embracing uncertainty and ambiguity as a way of moving forward.

While many of the ideas behind this platform are generally not something I can claim to have invented, for I have taken fragments from different and sometimes ancient sources, they’ve been presented here in a form which I hope makes them accessible to modern readers.

“He was the dynamism of a life free from civilisation’s shackles. He was strength and purpose and heart, where all else was grey with inevitable stagnancy. But he wasn’t free because of who he was, he was free because of how he lived — forever echoing the vitality and honesty at the centre of all life.”

Harmonics—at its most simple—is both a revolt away from something and an impulse towards. It’s a revolt against our bland consumer culture: living in a chloroform world where nearly half of people report having no interaction with their neighbours and more than one in six takes antidepressants.  

At the same time, it’s a move towards active friction; towards repolarisation; towards living for the fire even though it burns you in the process. Those who follow me on this path—who choose to harness their wilder energies within a structured framework—stand to unlock creativity, greatness, and the capacity to truly affirm life. It’s an opportunity to revive the dignity and heroism that today’s world has largely forgotten.

I might still be to some extent swimming against the current with this perspective, but there are signs, tentative signs, that the current may be changing direction.

In the last decade or two, there has been an explosion in scientific and philosophical work that has shown us we humans—psychologically and physiologically speaking—are meant to oscillate between the extremes. From The Comfort Crisis to The Other Side Of Happiness, things seem to be changing. And more and more of us are waking up to the fact that there’s more to living than simply maximising pleasure and avoiding pain.

To these people: I say take the leap and let Lifestyle Harmonics guide you back towards a more visceral and complete sense of what it is to be human. 

Lazy English Summers
Warwickshire, UK
Comal River, Texas

Comal River, Texas

1. What Inspired You To Launch The Website?

What’s remarkable, and also sad, about modern culture is how we’re surrounded by material abundance—and yet researchers tell us global rates of anxiety and depression have soared over the past few years.

Add to that reports suggesting that about one in four young adults has contemplated suicide and the reason is perhaps obvious: Happiness and fulfilment is becoming increasingly less common than it was even a couple decades ago.

Call me cliché, but I think one of the most important questions we can ask right now is: Why is this happening? We don’t need more quick fixes—we need a complete shift in the paradigm. And that’s why I launched Lifestyle Harmonics. 

2. Care To Explain How Harmonics Helps People?

It’s all too easy to fall into the trap of seeking comfort and pleasure while shying away from challenges and new experiences. But is that really living?

Life is filled with contrasts and contradictions, and it’s the tension between them that provide it with depth and purpose. Harmonics introduces a novel viewpoint: offering advice and strategies for how we can mix these opposing forces—stress & rest, for example, or pleasure & pain—together to tackle modern-day challenges and carve out a richer and more rewarding existence for ourselves.

3. How Would You Describe Harmonics To A Stranger?

Imagine living a life that is truly exceptional, where your wildest energies are directed towards your most noble goals. 

To make this a reality, we need to take on activities that involve some initial degree of discomfort. From sticking to a tough workout schedule on the one hand, to making a conscious effort to broaden our social circle on the other.

And that is the type of thing I explore through my writing: the art of reshaping our day-to-day activitiesto discover harmony between order and chaos and create a life that is truly remarkable.

4. Tell Us About Your Own Journey.

For years, I treaded the conventional path, moving from term time to term time, from school to university, from graduate schemes to the professional world. On paper, my career was respectable, but internally, I felt like I was fading away, like an ember burning out.

Reflecting back on that time, I realised that I was becoming restless and disconnected. The light behind my eyes never faded, rather it seethed and turned sour.

Eventually, I realised it was time to step-back and introspect. And so, I began to read a broad range of topics on sciencephilosophy, and self-help; from Nietzsche’s profound philosophies to Bastion’s insights on well-being. My curiosity branched outwards; embracing the thoughtful works of Ian McGilChrist and the inspiring writings of Andy Merrifield.

Gradually, I began to record and evaluate these concepts, mapping out a path that would help me live with meaning and purpose. And the result? Lifestyle Harmonics: The complete blueprint on how to optimise your daily living for lasting well-being and personal growth.

5. Why So Obsessed With Opposition & Harmony?

I’ve always resonated with the characteristics of a Scorpio: enigmatic, fervent, and deeply intense. However, fate had other plans for me, and I was brought into this world a Libra, thanks to a pair of forceps about two weeks prior to my due date.

But let’s not be too quick to judge the scales of balance. Just because Libra stands for harmony and balance doesn’t mean it has to be boring. Our lives are full of twists and turns, highs and lows, and it’s how we structure these things that gives us the opportunity to grow and thrive.

So yes, I’m a Libra who strives for balance and stability, but that doesn’t mean I’m dull or predictable. On the contrary, I embrace the challenges and contradictions of life, and seek to find meaning and purpose in them. Because ultimately, it’s the journey that defines us, not the label we’re given at birth.