But what I noticed as I was reading this magazine is that my attention span is completely shot. I found myself skipping paragraphs and jumping pages. The equivalent of hopping from open tab to open tab in my browser. I was challenged to hold my focus on a beautiful magazine in my peaceful and picture-perfect breakfast nook. I found myself with a compulsive itch for the kind of chaos that only social media can seem to scratch these days. Now look, I don’t think the internet is bad (I mean, here I am). But it might be a problem when I’m 5 pages into a really great read and at the same time am habitually reaching for my phone to refresh Instagram for the 10th time in 20 minutes. (And on that note, I’ve also noticed that even TV can’t seem to hold my attention – I seem to mindlessly grab for my phone when I’m watching my shows too!)
So I think I’d like to tweak my morning routine for a while and instead of absent-mindedly scrolling through my RSS feed and Pinterest I’m going to drag out all the magazines I’ve collected and practice giving real pages that I can turn my undivided attention.This reminded me of exactly what Daniel Goleman was referring to when I listened to an interview with him on NPR recently. We are becoming attached to our electronics in a new and interesting way. You can read a lot more about that in Goleman's book, Focus. (Funny note: I recently got the Kindle app, but I will read this one in hard cover with a cup of tea by my side.)
Goleman's suggestion for developing your focus muscle: meditate.