Photo credit: https://www.gentlemansgazette.com/cell-phone-etiquette/
Don’t get me wrong! I embrace and enjoy all the aspects of technology and use them gratefully each and every day. However, cell phones have become our oxygen tanks! They are attached to most of our hips; at the kitchen table, at work, while watching a movie, in the bedroom, in the bathroom, in the car…. And the list goes on.
One of the most frequently requested workshop topics is “Effective Communication”. Other popular workshop topics include “How to Deal with Different Personalities”, “Personal Resiliency During Challenging Times”, and “Raising Resilient Children”. The underlying theme inside all of these topics highlights the importance of being “present”. As Eckhart Tolle says, “Realize deeply that the present moment is all you have. Make the NOW the primary focus of your life”.
Communicating face-to-face, observing body language, and ACTIVE listening. When you are truly listening to someone it shows that person respect. In healthy relationships, both at home and work, clarifying is so important. In my experience, most conflicts arise from misinterpretation of what is actually being expressed. Also, HOW the words are expressed – is it calm and timely? And cell phone communication breaks both these essential ingredients! We assume tone and misinterpret intentions - we are hiding behind technology to deal with the problems we fear dealing with in person.
Even if we are merely enjoying the social media on our cell phones, how does this make the other people you are with feel? What is the message? Are relationships a priority? In my clinical practice, which includes marital and family counselling, communication issues and problem-solving skills are usually the heart of the matter. We are losing the opportunities to connect with each other in meaningful ways.
The number one source of happiness (happiness research proven!) is the
Quality of our Relationships. Turning of cell phones, laptops, iPad and TV will improve the quality of our Relationships. This reminds me of the winter nights when the power has gone out due to a storm, and we are forced to pull out the candles and board games. So much fun and laughs. Feeling connected to our friends and family improves our emotional and physical well-being; shared experiences brings moments of joy. Laughter is the Glue of Sanity.
Cell phones have become a habit and I too have been guilty of carrying it around with me and checking for the darn flashing lights! Let’s try to break this obsession together! Keep me posted on how you are doing too!
Yesterday is History, Tomorrow is a Mystery, Today is a Gift, that’s why it’s called the Present.