Time is an important commodity.
As a matter of fact, for people who trade time for an hourly wage it would be fair to say time is money.
That’s one of the main reasons I think it is important for us to give some conscious thought to how we spend our free time.
With that idea in mind, I attended a morning yoga class the other day and then proceeded to have a very peaceful and enjoyable day.
That information may have you thinking I’m about to write about the benefits of yoga and other meditative activities that encourage us to make time for ourselves so we can look inside and sort out what is truly important.
I do believe that, and I think the class contributed to my peace of mind, but don’t worry; I’m not going to go down that road today.
No, something else happened that morning that I think had just as much, or more, of an impact on the quality of my day.
Just before the class started, I switched off my phone… and then when the class ended I forgot to turn it on again, so I wasn’t instantly available to anyone who might have wanted a bit of my time.
Sure, I may have missed a few calls, but as far as I can tell none of them was so urgent that it couldn’t be dealt with later.
No rings, no interruptions, no new problems to think about, so for a while there I was in charge of my own thoughts. It was great.
What I’m driving at here is that while phones and computers and all the other things we use to stay connected to friends, family and work can be very useful, they can also become addictive and counter-productive.
I understand most people enjoy receiving calls and text message and that it is reassuring to know there are people out there who want to communicate, but I also think it is easy to go too far with electronic communication.
I’m sure a lot of the people I see using their phones in public are coordinating their lives or doing something related to their work, and that doesn’t bother me one bit.
The problem is more that once people organise what they are going to do with their free time a lot of them carry on starring into their phones instead of fully experiencing what they have organised.
I went to a pub recently to listen to some live music and I would say about 75 percent of the other people there were tapping away at their phones, sending messages or playing games or whatever, instead of watching the performers… who, by the way, were very good.
It struck me as being quite rude and I think it took quite a bit away from the atmosphere.
I also can’t help thinking all those phone users might have had a better experience, and maybe even learned something, if they had given their full attention to what was happening around them.
Sorry if this is a bit of a bummer, but I do think there are times when our phones just get in the way.