A notification comes in on your phone. “Breaking News – Donald Trump just tweeted again!” The temptation to read the story right away itches at your brain. You want to tap and be in the know, but your wife is sitting across the table from you asking, “How are you doing?”
We live in a constantly updated world. Social media keeps us in the know about what is going on in others’ lives. It also feeds us news that we are interested in. Machine learning is an amazing thing because through a technology called “cookies” (these things that track your internet browsing history), we only have to look at things that we want to look at.
There is a danger in being kept in that safety bubble where your point of view is always affirmed, but that isn’t what this post is about. This post is about what to do when the vibration happens on your wrist or in your pocket.
A little caveat, I love technology. I have a fitness tracker, smartwatch, smartphone, and tablet. I like keeping up to date on the latest tech news and reviews. I probably have spent way too much time on YouTube watching people talk about new phones, new versions of Android or iOS, and the latest new technology coming around the corner.
So, I know the tempation when the ping hits. It can be almost like second nature for your hand to go down into your pocket and slip the phone out and check.
However, when your with loved ones just don’t do it. It may be hard at first, but resist the temptation to have to know everything all the time. Most phones and devices now-a-days have a “Do Not Disturb” feature if this is something that is too hard. Its just a few taps away.
Shifting gears a little, that “Do Not Disturb” button can also be extremely valuable during times of productivity. It has become extremely easy to distract ourselves with various things with very little effort. As I mentioned earlier, one of my vices is YouTube. When I’m tired and don’t feel like doing anything, I’ll bring out my phone and scroll through my YouTube subscriptions.
I have a goal of writing almost every day, whether it ends up on this blog or not. Today, I had to get up and force myself down on this computer. I really just wanted to not do squat. However, as I was watching a review on the latest Android Wear smartwatch the conviction hit, “Get your butt at that computer.”
When we hear the voice, we have to choose what to do. In a world that is screaming for our attention at every single moment and wants to rope us into an instant gratification cycle, we have to choose to either bust free and live in the moment or spend our time looking at other peoples’ moments, some of which are manufactured.
The challenge for me in these times is simple – stop reading or watching other peoples’ moments. Put down the phone and live in the moment.