I felt naked…

In my rush to an early morning appointment, I had left my cell phone home, and it was too late to go back.

The meeting was with my Try Angle MasterMind group, a confidential program from Women in Business New Brunswick where entrepreneurs help each other deal with the adventures of growing their businesses.

Sharing that time with these amazing, smart, creative women is a highlight of my month. I always leave inspired and ready to tackle the next challenge.

But why was I feeling so twitchy? I couldn’t seem to relax. It took me nearly an hour to focus and be truly present in the meeting.

The answer was Nomophobia. The anxiety of being without your mobile phone.

If you’re over 30, chances are you’ve talked about the unhealthy attachment that the younger generation has to technology. A 2015 Nielsen survey found that 40% of Millennials (age 21-34) are distracted by technology during mealtimes.

Yet surprisingly, they are not the biggest offenders.

Forty-five per cent of Generation Xers (35-49), 52% of Baby Boomers (50-64), and 42% of those 65 and over are more likely to be looking at their phones, tablets, or televisions than their loved ones during meals.

What effect do these choices have on our relationships? How do you have a good conversation with someone who is twitching to check their cell phone?

It’s time to focus on the people in the room. I’ve started leaving my cell in my purse instead of checking email when driving with my honey. Other people stack their phones on the table when they’re out to dinner. A friend requires her children leave their phones in another room during meals. 

I challenge you to go naked a few times this month. Leave your technology at home, and let me know how it goes.

You also can read this article in the newspaper The District News, available throughout the Saint John region.

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