I do my best to really “be in the moment”. It was something I learned around the same time I learned about really good acting and how to best achieve it. It is also a very necessary life skill.
So I do a lot of thinking about how this relates to me being a good mother and good wife and good friend. I strive to really be present with people and give them my full attention, but something stops me.
My phone. It calls to me like a siren “Jennifer, look at what you what you are missing…. Pick me up!” “Jennifer, you know you want to read the latest likes and comments on your last post, Pick me up” – Never mind that your daughter, who you haven’t seen all day because you were at work smiling and laughing and wants to play, PICK ME UP! says my phone. Sometimes I listen and the phone wins. Sometimes I ignore the siren song and my life wins.
To be clear, My phone definitely doesn’t talk to me, this is a metaphorical level of nagging. But then again, I have a “siri” and I named him “Nigel”. He has a British accent and I really enjoy when he says, “Jennifer” but I digress.
I have talked to a few people recently about how they “use” their phone (Anyone else getting the feeling that your phone might be a drug?) and how they see others using their phones (in a word, CONSTANTLY) and given some of those conversations, I think my friends and family have some pretty healthy boundaries. We are definitely working to establish some good boundaries around the “use” of phones and devices in the Haston House.
- No Phones at the Table when eating. Thank you Dollar Store! 2. No Phones when we are spending “family time” – a rare commodity!
This came up because last weekend all anyone could talk about was “The Royal Wedding”. I am no different. I was caught up in all the pomp and circumstance and enjoyed watching the pictures that were posted by the media and other people’s comments on the pictures that were taken of the historic event.
Among the rest, I see someone took a picture that captured an elderly woman smiling serenely and watching all the hoopla while dozens of people clamored with their phones to get a good picture through their “screen” rather than actually “experience” the event.
Now, one can argue, they are multi-tasking! Getting a great shot while simultaneously enjoying the event. Maybe, but I think it’s far more likely that they were clamoring for that good shot and they just kept taking pictures over and over. I say this because I have seen it, when I go to see concerts, and live events, I see people everywhere with faces bathed in that telltale white light and MISSING out on Life.
Now, I am not saying you can’t use your phone. That would be impossible or maybe not impossible but really improbable. It’s your life, do what you like.
I am simply asking you to take a beat, and THINK before you pick up that phone. I needed some help with this, so I started using an app called “Moment” which tracks how often you use your phone. It goes deeper, it tells you how many times you picked it up and how long you used it. As someone who is VERY passionate about this subject, I had very few minutes, right? WRONG. My first report said 4 hours a day.
Ouch. But hey, I am aware of it, so NOW I have to do something about it.
It’s getting a little better, today it was 1 hour and 41 minutes.
Should you strive for that? Maybe. Only you can make that decision.
The next time your phone “whooshes or dings” or silently sings to you, please think before you respond.
Think About It.