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Expert GuidancePutting Down Our Phones

Putting Down Our Phones

Have you ever absent-mindedly reached for your phone? We all do, and whenever we do, we’re not living in the moment. Instead, we are intentionally distracting ourselves. Sometimes that’s OK, but sometimes it just amplifies the noise in our minds. In this episode of Everything In Between, Andy is in Death Valley, California, exploring why tech seems to stress us out so much.

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(wind whooshing) (soft music) One of the most common questions we get at Headspace is how to deal with technology. What is it that makes us want to sort of get away from technology? What is it that makes us feel overwhelmed by it? Is it the technology? Is it our minds? The thing that technology especially and kind of more recent years has done is to sort of amplify the noise in our minds. Let's just take the phone as one example. It doesn't matter what the device is. It's an inanimate object, it's a piece of glass, it's piece of plastic. It isn't the course of stress, it isn't the thing that makes us feel overwhelmed. Our relationship with that thing, our reaction to the things that come through that device that's the thing that causes stress. (soft music) Being overwhelmed is a direct result, it's our own reaction, our response to an external situation. (soft music) So we're not really living in the moment we are intentionally distracting ourselves, and if you think about what that does over time in terms of training the mind we train ourselves to be more distracted. So as much as possible when you feel that impulse to reach into your pocket or bag to pull out your phone not because you need to answer it or because you need to send something or check something simply because there's nothing else to do, maybe just catch yourself in that moment. (soft music) there's some kinda irony and tension there in the sense that in many ways we are because of that technology that much more connected and yet people consistently report feeling more disconnected. So although in our minds we think we're reaching out through a digital universe to connect with those around us. Actually, that's a very different kind of connection than actually connecting me with someone in person. (soft music) You know what social media has done for our connection, our relationship with technology. If we're like the post, how many people have liked the post? Are people commenting on it? And we sort of get into that almost way of life where we only feel good about ourselves if other people are showing us how they feel about us. In their tradition in which I trained with which is sort of later, they run which was Tibetan tradition. There was this phrase sort of they call it like virtual pride but it basically means sort of a quiet, inner confidence. We're not really driven by this urge to have others like what we do or like what we say to validate us in any way. We simply can tend to live life in a way that we feel best reflects our intention the way that we want to live in the world the way we want to be in the world. (soft music) If we become aware of how those behaviors those tendencies make us feel, then over time...


TypeExpert Guidance
Duration4 min

About your teachers

  • A former Buddhist monk, Andy has guided people in meditation and mindfulness for 20 years. In his mission to make these practices accessible to all, he co-created the Headspace app in 2010.

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  • Eve is a mindfulness teacher, overseeing Headspace’s meditation curriculum. She is passionate about sharing meditation to help others feel less stressed and experience more compassion in their lives.

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  • As a meditation teacher, Dora encourages others to live, breathe, and be with the fullness of their experiences. She loves meditation’s power to create community and bring clarity to people’s minds.

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  • Kessonga has been an acupuncturists, therapist, and meditation teacher, working to bring mindfulness to the diverse populations of the world.

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  • Rosie Acosta has studied yoga and mindfulness for more than 20 years and taught for over a decade. Rosie’s mission is to help others overcome adversity and experience radical love.

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