Cellular devices, need I say more! They’re an obsession amongst our society and, chances are, if you are reading this article electronically you probably have a cellular phone — if not a smartphone. And if you have kids are over the age of 10 you can probably attest to the deep-seeded habit/addiction they have to this modern day technology.
But it’s not just the kids, we adults are just as consumed by the immediate access to information that these 2- by-4 inch energy, time and money consuming monsters have become in our daily lives.
As much as I would like write this entire article on how these devices literally and figuratively challenge the quality of our lives, this article really is about HABITS and how to break a habit that may not be serving you.
I recently took advantage of the Lent season to give up a habit I had deeply fallen into over the past four months. I decided to give up using my smartphone while in bed (accept for accessing my daily meditation audio program recorded on my playlist). No checking emails, schedules, non-emergency texts, watching videos. I must admit it was hard, the temptation was big, but I stuck it out for the 40 days and not surprisingly my sleep improved. VOILA!
How did I break this tough habit? I decided to heed my own advice I share everyday with others as a coach.
Call It Out. Define a behavior or habit that may be compromising the quality of your life and articulate how it makes you feel. What this really means is speak the truth. (i.e. “I love smoking but hate the cost and how I smell”; “Eating something sweet every night is changing my waistline.” There is power in speaking it out loud.
Create a Compelling Vision. By saying “no” to this habit what would you get to say “yes” to? There is often little incentive to change something unless you have a vision as to what you are moving towards. i.e. “By turning off my cell phone early I can get more sleep, more sleep means no 3 p.m, crash, which means I won’t be craving a candy bar …”
Replace a bad habit with a good one. This step can be a deal breaker. Unless you find something else to do with your hands, mouth, ears or eyes the interruption in your habit may be too challenging for your habitual mind to bear, and it will scream at you to revert back to the old way unless you give it something different to experience.
BE PATIENT!!! It takes at least 21 days of consistently doing something for a habit to be broken or established. Don’t fret, just because you slip one day, be gentle, start again the next. It’s about practice not perfection.
If this article inspires you to help your child break the electronics habit, remember they do as they see, not as they are told.
Here’s to More Balance,