Slow Down For Your Well-Being
The other day I put my phone on the charger, realized I needed something from the store and left home without it. I didn’t even notice I had left my phone at home. My son went with me to the store, both of us rushing inside to get what we needed. Like clockwork, my programmed brain wanted me to check my phone, but I tried my very best to suppress those desires so that I could get the task done.
I’m so used to just having my phone with me, almost like a second skin, that I consciously thought I had it.
My son started talking to me; he had my full attention. We were both laughing and conversing, yet at the same time fully focused on what we needed from the store. We were “in and out” so to speak. Once we got to the car and the shopping bags were in the trunk I started searching my purse for my phone. It occurred to me I didn’t have it, and thinking I lost it in the store, I started to panic.
I kept thinking about Instagram, LinkedIn and Facebook, wondering how anyone would ever be able to get a hold of me and what would I do without it? Truthfully, I would have survived without knowing, and I did.
I survived a whole shopping trip without my cellular device clawing for my attention. I finally recalled leaving my phone at home on the charger and was in complete shock at my actions for leaving it (it’s not like me to do so).
I may be a millennial, but I forget sometimes that I still grew up in a time when cell phones were not a prominent factor. People read books a lot more, had face-to-face interactions, penmanship was admired and we were never as distracted with technology as we are now. If I survived then, I am certainly capable of surviving now.
Too much of our time is spent obsessing what he or she did this week on social media and harshly judging ourselves for not having the same seemingly amazing lifestyle. This obsession results in poor health and careless well-being that causes a great deal of us to fall into depression or anxiety.
This generation has been said to have some of the highest levels of mental illnesses, and a great percentage of the cause of that is due to excessive use of social media. When we judge ourselves too harshly or become too involved in virtual realities we lose sight of what truly makes us happy, therefore, focusing all our energy and time on superficial worries that add no profound depth to our lives.
I do not wish to betray my generation by any means. There are positive attributes to having all this technology, such as: an abundance of knowledge, rapid information, networking, support, awareness and so much more.
However, I do wish to enlighten my fellow peers, because much like you I’ve fallen victim to the unhealthy obsession I have with my cellular device. I forget to live, to enjoy and to experience. This is good for the soul, and by soul, I mean well-being.
How many can say they’ve been to a concert and instead of recording the event, that they were living and feeling the music by being in the moment? Or can you just wake up in the morning and not have the immediate instinct to check your phone? When I was at the store I got to enjoy time with my son. I got what I needed—as in being productive and being able to concentrate. I could drive home safely without hearing the tempting “ding” sounds ringing away from the depths of my purse on the car floor.
We need to take the time to embrace the world around us and live it instead of succumbing to a lower power with 23% or so life left and a certain number of gigabytes. Stop obsessing with where you can plug in your phone before it dies, worrying about that missed text you’re dying to open while driving, and frequently preoccupying your time with checking your social media.
Start taking time to yourself, time with your family and time with your friends, without the constant “dinging” “chirping” and “beeping” of the notifications beaming on your phone. If you consistently take the time to feed your well-being properly, then you will reach a longevity of happiness and peace.