In our modern ever connected world, the feeling of isolation has never been stronger.
As digital technology integration into our lives becomes ever more prevalent, this feeling of isolation is only going to get worse.
So how is 2017 going to be different?
It won’t, unless you learn to manage your digital addiction.
And it is not just you, even 4-year old’s now have their own digital devices. So, forget teddy, it’s now their tablet they will take to bed with them!
We need to set ground rules for ourselves, our children and everyone we connect with whether digitally or physically.
Digital devices have geographically liberated education and information. However, each of us still lives for the most part in our own little worlds, centered around those we spend the most time with.
And yet during this time, for the most part you are not actually really there with those around you.
According to a study released by Deloitte, Americans on average check their phones 46 times per day which is about every 5 minutes, if we assume they actually sleep at some point! This of course means they are only every giving at most 4 uninterrupted minutes to those around them.
Your routine if you own a mobile phone is most likely pretty similar to this.
With the start of a new year, it is always a natural time to reflect upon what we can do to improve our lives and I would recommend you do the following.
Decide when you are with people who matter to you, you are going to be truly with them.
This means keeping all other communication channels either off or on silent. Those calling you, need to understand you are no longer on the end of a digital leash.
You will respond when it is appropriate for you to do so.
If you have not read the Go-Giver then I recommend you do. There is a great example in there of what it truly means to be present.
In chapter ”9: Susan”, you read an all too familiar story where the couple return from their jobs, exchange whines and then fall into their individual evening routines. However, on this night, Joe truly listens to Susan without interrupting her.
Unwittingly Joe had completed his task of executing the Law of Influence, by placing Susan’s interests before his.
This is what you and I should be aiming for in 2017, to talk less and listen more. To place the true needs of those around us first.
The most important people are the ones you are choosing to spend your present moment with.
When you are talking with those around you, unless your job is to take calls then leave checking your phone until the present conversation has come to its natural end.
This year, I want you to promise yourself, no longer will you be a slave to the digital world or a zombie to the television.
Life is so much richer when you are living it fully engaged with those around you.