Digitally Mindful

I feel that I am generally pretty aware of my cause and purpose on the internet. I do not use Facebook so I run out of things to do on the internet faster than some people.  I can waste time on Ebay or Pintrest quite easily. I consciously try to avoid opening or “surfing” on my phone when I am with friends and family.  When the hint of boredom begins creeping in though I have been guilty of aimlessly swiping my phone just to stare at something.We loose so much human connection when we are tethered to our devices. Things that can suffer from being attached to our phones or tablets can be how we have forgotten how to fill silences, how to keep eye contact or a conversation engaging, how to get the nerve to make an unwanted phone call instead of just texting…things like that.  This is not true for everyone but these could be things that suffer from the way we act with our devices. I know I will be a parent that will teach my kids to be respectful with their use of phones and tablets. I hope that as a teacher I will be able to teach my students some of the ways to be respectful and thoughtful with their devices in their lives as well.

I think there are times to let loose on the internet and play around, but there is never a time to forget about your digital footprint, the tattoo that is forever. Sometimes we can stumble onto creative ideas and concepts by surfing the internet without a cause and this is the great thing about the endless world of the internet.

We are programmed to multitask, as a teacher I will expect my students to multitask at times. There are times when multitasking can take away from the best possible results, such as editing one’s paper,  focusing on a difficult task, or focusing on a person.

The video about disconnecting from the internet made me think of how this man that had been consumed by the internet, lost site of friends and conversations  or inside jokes had all surpassed him while he was on his break. This feeling seemed to be common even among the teens who gave up their phones for three days, the feeling of disconnect. Before reading about these experiences of teens and adults that disconnected for a time I would have argued that our phones disconnect us from what is right in front of us. Yet I guess there is a reason that we call it “connecting to the internet” because we truly are connected to many things through our devices. Though without thoughtfulness about when and where we are “connected” I do feel that they can be a portal we stare into to “disconnect” to what may be right in front of us.

I think that many teens and even adults feel insecure without their phones and giving them up or disconnecting from time to time is the only way to build confidence in ones self without the dependency of social media connection. It is important to break away from the internet and TV and video games to concentrate and to be completely cheesy “to smell the roses”!



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