My Addiction: Rings, Dings and Pings

Dear Wabi Sabi Artisans,

In the past sixty seconds, as I sit at my desk, I have heard the crashing of the ocean waves, birds chirping, the dog across the street barking, a car passing by and a multitude of electronic rings, dings and pings that alert me to incoming phone calls (both landline and cell phone), skype chats, text messages, emails, and Facebook IM’s.

Each of these sounds, from my myriad electronic gear, has its own unique tone and elicits a different physiological response.

I smile when I hear the ding of the text.

I cringe when my cell phone rings (I have a blinged-out Blackberry and it hurts my ear to talk on the phone but it makes it easier to find my phone when it’s deep in my handbag…go figure.)

I sigh when my landline rings because these days it’s generally a computer- generated robo call or a telemarketer…

And, depending on my stress level, I can be happy or annoyed when the emails land…..

I’m no scientist but I do know that this just can’t be good for my nervous system.  Like Pavlov’s dog, I am now trained to respond to all of these sounds.

The simple solution is to turn them all off (which I do by 8pm most nights when they get placed on the kitchen counter to be re-charged) but sometimes, when I get up in the middle of the night for a glass of water, I just can’t resist taking a peek to see what might have come in.  Will it be good news or bad?

I am in serious need of a tech detox….. I think I will start with a 24 hour one.  This Sunday.  One full day.  No phone. No Email. No Internet. No rings, dings or pings.

I’ll let you know what happens.

If you have any ideas or solutions, please post them below.


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6 Responses to My Addiction: Rings, Dings and Pings

  1. This elicited an immediate response, since I too am ‘trained’ to answer the words that come across my screen (occupational hazard as a writer, I suppose). I say that I am ‘functionally manic and an adult ADD kid’) since I am able to multi-task. I was in the middle of writing an outline for a workshop I am teaching next week and stopped to check my emails and yours showed up(: Twenty years ago, when I first began using the internet, I tiptoed around the computer, afraid I would break it, and now it feels like a best friend. It is where I both work and play. I carry my cell phone and laptop with me most work related places and when I travel. I disconnected my land line a few years ago since I wasn’t using it. Back in April when I was taking a weekend training called The Woman Within, I left the computer home (where it waited patiently for my return) and my cell phone in the car. It really did feel good to check in with myself and check out of contact with the world beyond that retreat center and yet the idea of doing that consistently, frankly trips some heart palpitations and the thought “What if I miss something?” , like a kid who doesn’t want to take a nap for the same reasons. I do remind myself that I need to nurture all aspects of myself, so I spend time with loved ones, and in nature and at the gym. Last weekend, I went to a drumming circle in a park, played with friends and children. I go to services at one of my interfaith communities, tonight I will be hanging out with musician friends, today I will go to the gym. What things do you do to nourish yourself, in addition to time with your ‘heart chakra on legs’?

    Wishing you Arielle time to just BE <3

  2. Julie Runion says:

    Granted, my job doesn’t depend upon each ring, ping and ding (I am a stay-at-home mom these days), but I turn the sounds on most of my electronics off. I initially did it so as not to wake the baby, but the gift of silence is a definite perk! I usually leave my land line on, since my most important calls would come from it, but everything else is silent! 🙂

  3. Sharron says:

    Gotta love you Arielle! Yes Tech Free Sunday!!! xxoo I’m reading Goldie Hawn’s biography. You would love it. It’s called “A Lotus Grows in the Mud” Have a great day

  4. Meike says:

    Healthy decision Arielle! Looking forward to your report!

  5. Nancy Lehnert says:

    It is wonderful to hear that such a busy and in demand lady is making it a priority to take time away from the electronic world. I feel it is imperitive to have quiet time to connect with ones Higher Power. Being quiet is the only way to hear your soul’s whisper!!
    Congratulations and thanks for the reminder for me to do so also!

  6. Lisa Natoli says:

    Hi Arielle! I just read this now, almost a year has passed since you wrote this article. How has it been going with the electronics? I used to have the same “problem” and now I keep my phone off at all times, and that works. I check it a couple of times a day. I usually don’t even have it near me. I turn off facebook during the day and only check it once in the morning and again at night. I don’t have a landline. We don’t have a television. And my husband and Bill and I have a no electronics rule/no cellphones/no texting when we are together or in a restaurant. We work from home so our personal life is mixed in with business, so I think the next step is getting an office outside of the home and “office hours” – that way when I am home, it is all fun and play and no electronics. Would love to hear a one year update from you on this topic! Love and Blessings and you look gorgeous with your “muffin top” haha – I wouldn’t have noticed and had to squint to find it, and I only did so because the article practically begged me to find it HAHA – like “find Waldo” 🙂 Love to you and Brian.