As I ate dinner one recent Sunday, I scrolled through my social media feeds on my phone. I read about how someone was going to the market to buy groceries, how someone had just moved, how someone had just missed their plane, and how another person’s daughter had just played a piano piece.
On and on it went. I devoured this information while I was shoveling food into my mouth and down into my gut.
Suddenly, something amazing happened; I paused, took a breath and looked up from my iPhone. I was amazed at what I saw. There before me was a stunning sight — a view so breathtaking and beautiful I was mesmerized. I live on a hill with a magnificent view over the city of Sydney. And at that very moment, the sun was setting on my rooftop garden and the sky was orange and pink. How could I have been ignoring this?
There was so much beauty around me, but I had temporarily caught the Distraction Bug and wasn’t taking it all in. After pausing and regrouping, I became present again. The food tasted so much better, I felt calmer and more engaged in the now. Bliss filled me. I was aligned again.
Catching the Distraction Bug is easy. It's a global contagion that's spreading fast. Have you caught it? Here are five tips on how to shake it off. Enjoy!
1. Come to your senses.
Regularly check in with your senses. Your senses operate in present time. What you hear, see, taste, touch and smell is all in the NOW! So throughout the day go through your senses and check in with the information they are offering you.
2. Go on conscious nature walks.
It doesn’t matter where you live; you should be able to find somewhere you can take a slow, conscious walk in nature, even if it's a local park. Stop, look at a leaf, smell a flower, watch an ant, feel the breeze or look at the clouds.
3. Put away all technology during meal time.
If it’s there at the table, the sweet lure of information will suck you in easily.
4. Adopt a one-screen policy at other times.
In our house we have a one-screen policy. Ie. No iPods, iPhones or laptops while watching TV, or any other double or triple combinations of screening!
5. Begin a meditation practice.
Above all, meditate! Meditation helps you be more present throughout the day. It also trains you to observe your mind rather than BE your mind. I recommend two meditations per day for 20 minutes each.
Have you tried any of these tips already? Tell me how it went for you in the comment box below.