The “Turning My Cell Phone Off” Experiment
Friday night I made a decision. I turned to my wife, while we were driving to dinner with our kids, and said: “Please take my cell phone”. She looked at me a little weird and acted as anyone would, and said “Why?”. I told her I wanted to disconnect for a little bit. I told her I didn’t want to check Facebook, Twitter, E-mail for 24 hours. I told her that whatever it was, it could wait. I had everyone that I loved in that car and wanted to give my 2 kids and my wife 100% of my attention. It sounds simple, doesn’t it?
It wasn’t as simple as it sounds. I am always checking “status” updates. I always check who “liked” something, or what new tweet was shared. I always want to know what e-mails have come in to see what is going on in the recruiting process. It has become exhausting. I have not given direct attention to the world that is going on around me right at that moment.
The question is what did I see? What did I notice by watching and listening? I saw my kids at Gymnastics. I see them every week, but I really saw them this week. I saw how good they were and I saw them grow up right in front of my face. I’m not saying I don’t pay attention to them when I take them, but I really saw every move and every facial expression that they made. I was present in the moment.
I saw my daughter