I recently wrote an article for the Huffington Post called “Start Looking Up Instead Of Down: Three simple tips to help you unplug and mindfully engage.” The post details how obsessed people have become with their smart phones and other mobile devices and the impact that the overuse and abuse of technology is having on our relationships, productivity, ability to focus and overall wellbeing. One of the tips I highlight in the blog is to “resist the rabbit hole.” So often—and I’ve found myself here, too—we pull our phones out of our pockets to check email, the weather or movie times and before we know it, we’re miles deep into the worldwide web. We click through page after page, not really absorbing—or even really caring about—the swell of information that we find ourselves caught in. And, we do this while standing in line at the grocery store, when waiting for the bus or even during dinner with our families. Before we know it, we’ve become so plugged into our devices that the world around us becomes a passing blur and we start missing out on those beautiful moments that make our lives so rich. We miss the random connection with a stranger who could have become a friend. We miss our partner doing or saying something so funny that we would have been brought to tears of laughter. We may even miss a key milestone in our child’s life, like taking a first step, because the rabbit hole of our phones takes us so far away from where we are in real life, in the present moment.
While technology use is ubiquitous in our culture, with awareness of the what, why, how and when we turn to our devices, we’re able to gain more control over our technology choices and make more thoughtful and informed decisions about how we engage with media and the world—the real, right in front of us world—around us.
Mindfulness tools can help you unplug and engage
If you’re struggling with technology use or abuse, know that you’re not alone and that there are mindfulness tools that you can learn and apply that can make a big difference in the quality of your life. Maybe you’ve heard of mindfulness meditation, but aren’t sure if it’s for you or where to start. If you’re interested in developing mindfulness tools and the practice of mindfulness meditation, I invite you to download Introduction to Mindfulness – A free tool kit – on my website. Not only can the practice of mindfulness help you develop a healthier relationship with technology, it can be used to to help improve pretty much every aspect of your life.