TAKING TIME TO BE MINDFUL

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Photo CC By-Jhaymesisviphotography

If I am being completely honest, the Internet is one of my biggest enemies when it comes to getting homework done.  There are literally endless distractions right at your fingertips the moment you open up that first web browser. Pretty soon, you start clicking around and before you know it, one thing just leads to another.

I like to think that I try to be mindful about my use of technology and the Internet.  I think that I do an okay job of not spending excess time consumed with it, due in part to the fact that my daily schedule just does’t allot time for it.  However, this certainly does not mean that I don’t occasionally find myself spending time passively scrolling through my social media feeds and surfing the web.

I have personally seen first-hand the effects that technology can have on our lives; both good and bad.  One of my favorite features of the iPhone, is the ability to FaceTime with any other person who also has an iPhone.  This comes in extremely handy when I want to talk to my sister who lives 15 hours away, my best friend from high school who lives 17 hours away, or any of my other family members who are a shorter 7 hours away.  Without FaceTime, I would have to go months on end without seeing the faces of my loved ones.  For this reason among others, I am thankful for technology.

On the flip side, I have also seen technology have a not so great impact on my life when it comes to my close relationships.  I can 100% relate to trying to have a conversation with someone and feeling like they were more interested in their phone or computer than talking to an actual person.  As stated in Huffington Post‘s “Why You Feel Terrible After Spending Too Much Time of Facebook”, technology has become a ‘habitual dependency’.  Sometimes it seems like we can’t live without it.

As I was doing my research, I read through the article about simplifying your online world.  I would agree that this is something we should all look into.  Often times, when I am walking around campus, I can go several minutes without making eye contact with anyone, because everyone is stuck in their own little world.  When we consciously make the decision to not be glued to our devices like robots, only then will we truly be present.  I really do feel that we miss out on some of what is important in life when we are permanently tethered to our devices. There are so many wonderful opportunities around us when we take a second to look up from our phones.

I have downloaded the Moment App and have started to track my phone usage.  However, I do not have much information yet at this point since I only downloaded it earlier yesterday.  I’m not sure that having this app on my phone will make too much of a difference in what or how much of my phone I use on a daily basis, but I am willing to give it a try.  Even though my actions may not change too much, it may help me to be more mindful about what I am doing with my free time.

The Internet is a wonderful tool when we can use it to get in touch with family and friends who live far away.  We just need to be conscious about how we spend our time on it otherwise.  I feel that it is crucial to be able to make your life outside of your technological devices a priority.  Get outside, see the world, make connections, and have a conversation (without a phone acting as the middle man).  When we make an effort to do this, I think we will feel the same sensation of ‘freedom’ that Paul Miller spoke of in his TED Talk.

 

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6 thoughts on “TAKING TIME TO BE MINDFUL

  1. I also think that I will download the Moment app so that I can diagnose how much time I spend on my phone. I do not spend any time on social media, but I am a horrible about not watching TV on my phone. I am always watching TV in my downtime. Essentially I subbed Facebook for Netlfix. I try to be conscious about my online time, but sometimes it’s hard with school, schedule apps, and communication platforms.

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    1. It definitely can be a struggle from time to time! I think that getting rid of social media is a good start. Even though you spend some time watching Netflix, reducing the amount of apps that you use on your devices is a good way to get going. Thanks for reading!

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  2. I think it is a good idea for more people to start monitoring their time on the internet because it does start impacting our lives. Using the internet for things like communicating with family is always important, especially when you only get to see them ever so often. I think if everyone took a step back and watched their daily lives on video to see how much they use their phones and other devices, their minds would be blown. We need to start communicating face to face with people while we are walking by instead of looking at our phones.

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    1. For sure! As a whole society, we definitely undervalue face to face interaction and conversation. How do you think we can begin to make strides towards detaching from our mobile devices? I’m afraid that as of now, the trend is just going to keep going the other way.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I liked the moment app but it didn’t tell me anything that I didn’t already know. I really enjoy the use of facetime because it is hard to be away from family and something about face to face contact is nice.

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