The world is a busy place.  Cell phones, email, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and so many more that my ‘old self’ doesn’t even know about. Do me a favor – walk into a restaurant or social environment and just watch – people watch – what are people doing?  Are they engaging in conversation with each other or distracted with their cellphones?  Do you feel people are 100% present in their day to day interactions?  Think about that…

Let’s back up; so you can truly follow me.

Three years ago, I made some major lifestyle changes.  A HUGE change that has been one of the biggest blessings in my life.  If you know me personally, you know what I am talking about. My perception of life changed.  My worldview shifted – and ever since, I knew I did not want to miss an experience – miss a moment in life; a moment with my family; my friends, my husband and my children.  The deep feeling of joy that I have been able to experience over the past couple years has been indescribable.  And of course, I am always looking to continue that growth.  I started pondering how I could get the absolute MOST out of every experience?

That statement has stuck in my head and I realized that technology was getting in my way.

So often we get lost in our phones; in the aimless scrolling that goes along with the easy access to technology.  Don’t get me wrong.  I am not perfect- in fact, that was me!  I am writing this because this is something I am constantly being more mindful of – to UNPLUG from the world and be more present in every aspect of life.

So, here are the things I am challenging you to think about… how to ‘unplug’ from the world.

  1. Set down your phone.  I bet you knew that was coming!  Just try it.  ‘Lose’ your phone for a while.  Put it on silent – turn off your notifications and set goals of being ‘cell phone free’ for stretches of time.  Start with 30 minutes, then 60 minutes, and just feel how freeing it is!  I promise, once you get over the FOMO (feeling of missing out) with your social media, you will feel way more connected and engaged.
  2. Remove your apps! Could you take Facebook off your phone?  I am an introvert at heart.  I would be super content with never engaging in conversation.  Ever.  Seriously, I love to be alone!  Social environments overwhelm me.  So, my cell phone is easy to hide behind.  During this past election I was fed up with the world – once I removed some (not all, I am working on this, too!) social media apps from my phone, I felt WAY more positive.  Less bogged down by other people’s comments, posts, negativity and thoughts.  Life can be challenging; the last thing we all need is to carry everyone else’s problems.  Are you feeling me?
  3. Get up an hour earlier.  I know, you probably think I have lost my mind!  My alarm goes off every day at 4:07am.  Yep, you read that correctly.  MondayFriday I go to the gym and workout.  Saturday and Sunday is the good stuff. I set my alarm to spend a good couples hours to myself.  First things first – I make a cup of coffee, turn on the fireplace and chill.  Sometimes I goal set and reflect.  Other times I catch up on work and emails.  Sometimes I bug Dr. Bethany with ideas and thoughts at wee hours in the morning; but God love her – she knows this is when I am most productive.  My hour to myself sets the tone for my day.  Until I hear the first pitter patter of kids steps coming down the stairs for that first morning hug.
  4. Reflect. Reflect on your day.  Be quiet in your thoughts.  Two years ago we moved out to the country.  I love the quiet – the sound of the wind on the trees and corn, the sunrises, the wildlife, the stars… The STARS!  Oh man, I love to walk outside in the dark early in the morning and just look up at the beautiful sky.  I spend a lot of time reflecting.  The more I reflect, the more grateful I feel for my life, my friends, my family and our practice members.

Try it; just TRY it!!  I want to hear your feedback.  Unplug and engage.  Believe me, you will be so happy you did!  Dr. Niki

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