“Put your phones down.”

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(After you read this 😉)

I sat working at a coffee shop the other day and at a group of couches nearby, there were high schoolers gathered. They were all on their phones – together. Each one of them was staring down at their devices, scrolling. At one point, one of them was even on FaceTime with someone else.

“Everyone, put your phones down. Put them on the table,” one of them said.

I was surprised when I heard it but many did, at least for a moment. It seemed to only last maybe one minute before phones were back in their hands.

As an outsider, it was interesting to witness and also a great reminder for our own lives. How often are we actually present with one another and how often are we all just together but on our devices? And are we even aware that we’re doing it?

In my own life, I’ve been trying to be really mindful of this. I often choose to leave my phone in my purse or jacket, even as I watch everyone else that I’m with have their phones on the table (face up) or be scrolling social media, texting others (or each other), and just overall not being present.

Have you ever had that moment? It doesn’t feel great to be on the receiving end. It doesn’t feel great to have those that you’re with not actually be with you in that space because their minds are everywhere or anywhere but there with you.

Technology can be a beautiful thing, helping us be closer to one another, but it can also be a detriment that keeps us from being present with those in our lives.

When was the last time you stopped to notice this? When was the last time you were actually present with the people you were with?

As we welcome in the new year and as you work to set any goals for 2022, I encourage you to focus on being more present with those in your life, whether in a group setting or one-on-one. Notice how that presence helps you form deeper bonds with your friends, family, and community.

And when you’re ready to focus on being present with yourself, put down your phone, and I encourage you to sit in meditation with this Present Moment Meditation or flow your way through this I Am Present Vinyasa.