Take Back Your Mind from Devices
Do you sometimes feel like a slave to your electronic devices, and technology in general? Do you find yourself constantly checking your e-mail, Facebook and text messages even though you just looked at them moments ago?
Here are five naughty habits that I love to chat with my clients about. I challenge you this week to pick one of these to focus on addressing so that you can move towards a more mindful and present state. Remember that according to Yogic philosophies, it takes 40 days to break a habit and 90 days to make a new habit stick.
- Going to the bathroom with your cell phone. Use this time to relax and let the body focus on removing waste. Deeply breathe and give yourself time. I highly recommend sharing this one with your partner, and holding each other accountable!
- Checking your cell phone and/or e-mail first thing in the morning. In fact, I recommend charging your phone outside of the bedroom and using an old school alarm clock instead. This will help with your temptation to check your cell phone in the morning, middle of the night and right before bedtime. Use this early morning time to develop a mindful practice such as going for a run outside, deep breathing exercises, listening to music, taking a peaceful shower, or having a cup of coffee and really smelling the aroma.
- Responding to text messages or e-mails immediately. Give your mind and body time to intuitively look within before responding. Remember that it takes patience to have a plan and no one owns you. I advise a minimum of 10 deep breaths before responding. Be smarter, not faster.
- Watching TV to fall asleep at night. Make your bedroom a sacred place and try to leave all electronics outside. By making it technology free (or at least more technology free), you are giving yourself the space to properly relax into sweet slumber. If sleep is so important to us that we generally can recall the exact number of hours that we slept the previous night, make this necessary change to improve the quality of those hours.
- Checking social media sites constantly. We all know that this can be a tremendous time suck. Set a limit on how many time a day that you are allowing yourself to check Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. I recommend only allowing yourself to look at social media at your home computer to kick the mindless checking on your mobile devices. You will be more fulfilled by living in the present within.
So go ahead and prove to yourself and your ego that you are not addicted to your device. Meditation can help keep some of the underlying anxieties behind these habits under control. Know that when you are ready, we can work together to develop a bespoke meditation practice just for you and your hurdles so that you can fully embrace mindfulness. This will be the cherry on top for now, and just the beginning of what can become.
Oh wow you are so right about taking the phone to the bathroom! It sounds so weird to say it out loud but I totally do that. And sometimes my teens take their phones to the bathroom to hide from chores-they call it ‘poo-crastinating!’ But the bathroom should definitely be an internet-free zone. Thanks for this!