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  • Writer's pictureNaomi Rubinstein

Digital Minimalism

As I sat in cafes engrossed in Cal Newport's "Digital Minimalism," I found myself drawing attention from acquaintances intrigued by the book's premise. It's not surprising given how many of us, including my clients, grapple with the pervasive influence of our captivating devices.

From partners lamenting their loved ones' excessive screen time to parents fretting over their children's attachment to smartphones, the struggles are palpable. According to Newport, the crux of digital minimalism lies not in shunning technology altogether but in enriching the quality of our lives—a pursuit that demands effort and perhaps, solitude.

Newport astutely observes how modern life has eroded moments of solitude, leaving us tethered to our devices and starved of introspection. But there are ways to reclaim our autonomy and reconnect with what truly matters:

  1. Reclaim conversation: Genuine connection thrives in face-to-face interactions where empathy blossoms and understanding flourishes. Prioritize real-world conversations over digital exchanges to nurture meaningful relationships.

  2. Don't click "like": Newport challenges the notion of maintaining vast social orbits, urging us to cultivate deeper, more authentic connections. Quality over quantity should guide our social interactions.

  3. Consolidate texting: Switch your phone to Do Not Disturb mode to minimize distractions and prioritize real-life interactions. Texts should serve as catalysts for face-to-face meetings, not substitutes for genuine communication.

  4. Reclaim leisure: Rediscover the joy of offline activities like board games or outdoor sports with friends and family. Engaging in physical pursuits fosters bonding and enhances overall well-being.

  5. Explore new hobbies: Dedicate time to hands-on pursuits like DIY projects or learning a new skill. Embracing creativity and craftsmanship provides a gratifying escape from digital monotony.

  6. Join a community: Seek out local groups or classes that align with your interests, whether it's early morning meditation sessions or group fitness activities. Shared experiences strengthen social bonds and foster a sense of belonging.

  7. Embrace slow media: Challenge the frenetic pace of digital consumption by opting for thoughtful, well-crafted content. Slow media encourages intentionality, ethical engagement, and a deeper appreciation for quality over quantity.

  8. Simplify your smartphone: Streamline your digital experience by minimizing apps and notifications, allowing for a more mindful and deliberate use of technology.

By adopting these principles of digital minimalism, we can reclaim control over our digital lives and cultivate a more balanced, fulfilling existence. It's a journey worth embarking on—one that promises liberation from the digital noise and a return to the richness of human connection and self-discovery.

I want to leave you with this song. It’s an oldie, but a goodie!!!

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