For most of the 90s, my car had a sticker that said “Kill Your Television.” A bit violent, a bit extreme, I loved it. It told anyone who drove behind me that hey, I didn’t buy into the mainstream hypnosis. I spent time talking with my family, not looking at a screen. I was interesting.
Funny enough, the sticker seems to have disappeared just as cell phones and computers made their quiet way into my life. It would be years before I realized that the TV might have been the better alternative, the healthier fare. After all, we could all watch it together.
Recently, I have once again entered into a higher awareness of my relationship with my phone. These bouts of attention come and go in cycles and each time I have a whole bunch of understanding of what’s happening, all the right words and statistics.
I know what’s going on.
Not only do I know, but I can feel it. In my brain, I mean. I can see how it is not so much the phone I am hooked on, but the Distraction. The freaking distraction. I see how hard it has become for me to read ten pages of a book without checking the darn thing. Just in case, you know? Just in case something really interesting, really important happened in the last few minutes.
I do not like this one bit. I do not like being told what to do and this is pretty much what’s happening, here.
So in the last few days, I have entered a new cycle of “I’m going to do something about this.”
And then, because the Universe loves to make a point, the-man-I-love-and-who-often-drives-me-crazy decides to really get on me about this. And goodness does he ever.
Because hey, I have been thinking about this on my own, I think a simple: “Yes, I hear you and I’m working on it,” is going to do. But oh no. Apparently, I need more information, more examples.
Which pisses me off.
So I talk about how important it is for me to check my phone. I have clients, I have children, and I have friends on the other side of the border. If we are traveling I have a home and pets to check on, and I have a social media life to keep up with. I have a life!
And I also know that the very thing I am defending - solely because it / I is being attacked - is the problem, not so much Carlos’ unpleasant rant.
Years ago, I interviewed Maggie Jackson, author of the book Distracted. Maggie knew what was coming. She could smell it. I listened to her and vowed that it would never happen to me.
And my goodness it is so easy to slip into it. I live alone, in the middle of pretty much nowhere. The majority of the people I love live in other time zones. I don’t want to be disconnected from them.
Even as I write this, I know it’s BS. A lie. I can absolutely be connected to them and still be in balance.
I am hooked and that’s that.
I am hooked and I get to choose what I am going to do about it, and how.
Awareness is the first part, this I know. I also know that for me to make promises - even to just myself - about timeline, schedule, and restraint are not going to work. What I need is to pay attention to my “why.” To keep it close at hand. For the first phase, which is usually the hardest.
The why is that as I said earlier, I hate being told what to do and I’ll be darn if a little machine (which I love dearly for its magical abilities) is going to tell me to look at it every few minutes. So there’s that. Rebellion can go a long way with me.
Then there is The Guidance. The Guidance that is always there for me and does not steer me wrong. If I ask, it will take me there. Back into harmony. Back to a place where I choose the goodness and pass on the madness. I trust this.
A girlfriend recently said to me: “I am sitting here trying to not smoke a joint, not get sexy with some guy, and not look at my phone. Staying away from ice cream is the easy addiction.”
In the end, it’s all about Sovereignty. And these days, our Sovereignty is increasingly more precious and more elusive.
SCARED OF THE SACRED