Dealing with Distraction in a Digitally-Driven World

“Mom, do you remember in How to Train Your Dragon 2, when Hiccup said ______?”

“Hmmm… I don’t think I remember that part.”

“That’s probably because you were looking at something on your phone.”

Yup. Real conversation folks. My name is Shari and I am digitally distracted.

Well, it is a new year. A time for setting goals. One of my big goals this year is to reduce my dependence on digital media. This doesn’t mean that I’m going to give up my computer or my smartphone any time soon, but I do plan to use it in a much more intentional way.

Until now, I’m one of those people that others love to hate. I look at my phone during conversations, pick it up when I should be playing a game with my children, and check it even when I know nothing important is coming in. It’s not really that I am afraid of missing something. I’m not that big of a Facebook user and I haven’t even explored Twitter or Instagram yet. It’s just that I’ve always been a learner. I love reading. I love learning new things. Really, I want to know, how DID people ever live without Google?

I’ve been known to teach myself how to sew or play the piano through online websites. I often look up new information about writing, website development, business software or homeschooling. I use the internet daily for bible study, recipes and homeschooling information. Unfortunately, I am usually quite scattered because I have too many things going on at once. The World Wide Web is truly wonderful because it keeps us connected and gives us access to all the information we could ever need or want. Sadly, it is truly terrible for the same reasons.

I always said I was a multi-tasker. I get more done when I’m doing everything at once, right? I am so learning that this is not the case. In fact, I’m learning that it takes me twice as long to get things done when I try to do more than one thing at a time. I’m learning that focusing on one task at a time, not only helps me move through my list more quickly, but I’m a lot less overwhelmed along the way.

So what is my number one goal this year? To be less distracted. That means, when I’m researching I use Google, when I’m writing, I’m in Word, when I’m praising God, it’s Him alone. When I’m with my family, they are my first priority.

As I write this, we’ve just rung in the new year and I’m heading off to spend a few minutes with hubby before we turn into pumpkins. And this time . . . I’m plugging my phone in downstairs.

Happy New Year! All the best in 2015.

What’s your biggest distraction? Do you ever shut down technology completely? Any plans to make changes this year?



2 thoughts on “Dealing with Distraction in a Digitally-Driven World

  1. My biggest distraction–my phone. I like it ALOT–probably more than anyone should like their phone LOL! But, after reading several different articles on the productivity of humans in this digital world–or should I say lack of productivity, and realizing how little focus I am able to have when I am trying to do an activity and look at my phone at the same time; I have realized that I have become more dependent than I would like to admit. It can be hard when this said technology is needed for our work but whatever happened to work being done at the end of the day? Because of technology we are at our employers/clients beck and call 24/7. My goals for this year are to have less screen time–so if that means missing an “important” FB post or text then so be it. If it is truly important my phone will ring. My evenings will consist of leaving my phone in one spot and not carrying it around with me, and when I go out for a walk I won’t take it with me. And because my job requires me to use Facebook several times a day–my evenings won’t be spent checking posts and living vicariously through others–but instead loving my own moments with my family.

    • I think the phone is one of the top distractions for most people. More and more, I am hearing of people doing what you are doing, turning it off for periods of time, especially when it’s use is work related.

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