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Is The Internet Changing Your Brain? (squirrel!)

Good morning!!!! So this post is a bit ironic as you read it, as it’s asking about how much time you spend online. HA! I get that. And I also get that oftentimes we are online for good reason; checking and responding to email, paying bills, WORKING…and we’re productive and get shit done.

But other times…..most times, it’s a time suck. Do you spend a lot of time online or looking at your phone? And be honest with yourself….If you do, please, read on.

And even if you don’t, if your kids or loved ones spend a lot of time on the internet, this is important for them, also.

Does the Internet Really Affect Our Brain?

A group of scientists from around the globe just released the results of a study on how the internet is affecting our brain… and there’s a TON of info in it about how it is impacting our thinking both over the short- and long-term.

Now, obviously they still have a lot to learn about this, but here’s one thing that really struck me from the results, because I personally have experienced it – and I am 99.999% sure you have, too!

Squirrel!

Have you ever spent some time online and then notice that your ability to focus on JUST ONE THING for more than 30-60 seconds is a lot lower?

Like checking emails and then popping over to another tab to check your Facebook.  Or having a conversation with someone in your house, but picking up your phone to check your notifications while you’re mid-conversation?

You are NOT alone. In fact, this was one of the findings of the study!

One of the scientists working on the study said in a press release: “The limitless stream of prompts and notifications from the Internet encourages us towards constantly holding a divided attention — which then, in turn, may decrease our capacity for maintaining concentration on a single task.”

I don’t know about you, but I find that to be incredibly scary! Focus is SO IMPORTANT for so many things – including learning new things and keeping our brain healthy as we age! And you know what? I TOTALLY see this in our boys when they use electronics (also, behavior, whoa!)….so they rarely use electronics. I’m a better parent this way. 

You Are In Control

The thing is, you have a lot of control over this, more than you might think. Which leads me to a challenge for you…

It’s all about working on (re)developing your focus … away from your computer and phone. And even away from your watch, if you have one that sends you notifications and alerts!

Ready, Set, GO!

All you have to do is set a timer (preferably one that isn’t on your phone/watch) and focus on doing something (ANYTHING!) for 15 easy minutes. Shut off all your devices, put them in a drawer in another room, and walk away.

You can read, do chores, sit quietly in a room, go for a walk, get crafty … basically, do ANYTHING!

Try it, and see if you find yourself reaching for your phone, diverting your attention to another task, or feeling fidgety or frustrated and a little “lost.”

Over time, you can start to increase the amount of “focused” time. At first, unplugging can be hard but once you get used to the feeling of being “unplugged,” you will find it incredibly liberating and relaxing!

Unplugged

Some people find that spending an entire day or weekend “unplugged” makes a big difference for their levels of stress and also their ability to concentrate.

Give the 15-minute challenge a try and see how it goes! We’ll be here for you when you decide to plug back in. 🙂

I hope you have an awesome day!

Kelly aka ApotheKelly

P.S.  I’ve got three spaces in my schedule open next week for a personalized goal-setting session! We can dial in your health and wellness goals and create a plan to help you get there.  If you want one of the three spots, send me an email with “Let’s Do This!” and I’ll personally reach out to get something set up. 🙂 >>>CLICK HERE TO SEND ME AN EMAIL<<<

 

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