IMG_4204Today, I clicked on the App Store button on my phone to update a dozen programs that needed a bug fixed, or just a little polishing. When I clicked to install the new versions, the progress meter froze. Maybe it’s got something to do with the all the unused apps loitering on my screen, or maybe the 1,792 photos and videos I’m afraid to delete from my camera roll.

The phone is full. It can’t take one more thing. And can’t we all relate?

How is your progress meter doing these days? When I get to my limit, overstimulated by all the pushing and nudging from my apps, I’ve got a lot less tolerance for all the pushing and nudging from my loved ones. I get short with the kids. I gloss my eyes over and say “uh-huh” even when it doesn’t make sense in conversation. I’ve also been known to stick my head out the window when I’m frazzled.

When I get like that, I know it’s time to take inventory and pinpoint what things give a good return on time spent. I got my smart phone 18 months ago and like one friend commented yesterday, it’s been a double-edged sword. There is this convenience of having my phone, texts, day planner, to-do list, camera, dictionary, mini library, note pad, voice recorder, email, Bible, radio, alarm clock, and road map all in a thing the size of my hand. But I do start to miss the individual pieces and the way they allowed me to focus on one thing at a time.

I miss my leather bound planner that looks like a poetry book and all of the sticky notes I’d tuck inside. In fact, I’ve recently become so overwhelmed by the list in my Reminders app, that I’ve started writing just a few manageable tasks on a sticky note to have in sight throughout the day.

notificationsWhile I like to listen to the audio Bible if I’m walking back from my son’s school in the mornings, there is something about picking up the weighty book, setting it on the coffee table and reading from its onion skin pages, the same pages I touched back in high school.

I miss being able to get on the phone without getting lost in notifications and forgetting who it was I meant to call in the first place. Lately, I’ve minimized the temptation by changing the notification settings on my iPhone. If you want to change yours too, just go to Settings and hit Notifications. Pick your app and choose what kind of alerts (banners or full alerts) you want, if any. Decide if you want the sound on or not.

Change it up according to what you have planned for the day and how accessible you want to be to the online world. Less stimulus there means more energy to invest in the important things right in front of you. That’s progress.



Here’s a little Internet break for you. Right now, before you do anything else online….
Find that loved one who has been nudging you for attention or pushing your buttons today. Give them a smile and a squeeze.

P.S. I’m spending the next couple of days celebrating my 10th anniversary with my husband. I hope to schedule some posts ahead of time, but if I don’t, we’ll catch up soon. 🙂

{I’m linking up with Nester for her annual 31 Days blog get together. Don’t want to miss this series? Be sure to subscribe by entering your email in the box on the homepage sidebar. Find all posts in the series here.}