Okay. That’s clearly a title to grab your attention. You know that diet is not usually in my vocabulary, but I stumbled upon an article recently and I couldn’t ignore its validity in my life. The truth is, I am a technology addict. I can’t help it. Since winning America’s Next Top Model, I have become an international Supermodel, business owner, jet-setter, candle designer, blogger, etc. Technology is the only thing that keeps me connected to my family, my business, and my agent. Without these things, I would be lost. The truth is that it’s hard to prioritize when your whole life is on one tiny device, which is why I began my diet from technology.
The floating concerns about cell phones causing cancer, arthritis, and an inability to connect naturally to other human beings make me wonder why our use is only growing and growing. According to Daniel Sieburg, author of The Digital Diet, “Constantly checking your Blackberry, Facebook and Twitter can be addictive--when you aren’t online you worry somebody needs you or that fun things are happening without you”. Just ten years ago my cell phone didn’t even have a color-screen. Now I expect it to make me breakfast in the morning.
Technologically speaking, if I could only keep one thing, I think it would be Skype. There is nothing better then coffee with my Mom over the video chat or seeing my 3 year-old nephew make funny faces at me through the screen. Skype keeps me close to the ones I love and I think that this puts things in perspective. Texting and e-mailing are so impersonal. After months of flying every day, I can feel like a robot. I never get to have full conversations, laugh aloud without including a “LOL”, or take a stroll with a friend. These are the things that make us human and keep us from simply going through the motions of life.
I know that you probably can’t go cold turkey, so start with baby steps. When vacationing with loved ones, turn the phone off. Better yet, let it die and forget about it. If you must, designate one hour each morning or night to make calls and do work so you can spend the rest of your time focusing on what’s really important. You don’t want people’s memories of you to be texting. Another baby step would be to try to go a day without “logging in”. It’s also nice to just go a whole day without your cell phone. Surround yourself with people you love and shut it off. Use your phone for necessities only, not fun. You are missing out on life’s little gifts just because you choose to play a stupid game to “pass the time”. People used to pass time by living, now we avoid life with apps. I ask you to take time out for the little things in life. Start small. Find beauty in reality. Find joy in simple things, like a child’s smile. Take the time to feel the sun’s warmth on your face and the wind in your hair. These are the things that we will look back on and wish for more of.