People are on the right track.

Turning off notifications is a good idea as a way to avoid constant reminders that someone, somewhere, has said something that may require our attention and remove it from the people who are in front of us.

Limiting use of phones at dinner is another simple way to take a small break from social media availability and focus on the people you are with in real life.

This can also be a way to practice limiting use at other times, as you become more used to having your phone turned off or in another room.

Here are some additional strategies that can work:

•Go Offline at Certain Times of Day: If you create windows when you are not available (like dinnertime, after a certain time of night, or even every other hour), you begin to teach yourself how to limit your availability. You also teach others not to expect you to be constantly available. This small boundary may make it easier to disconnect at other times and in other ways.

•Become Comfortable with "Sleep Mode": Putting your phone on "sleep mode" and only checking it once an hour is a good way to keep notifications functional but silent, so you can choose when to let them interrupt your day. This puts you in greater control.

•Ask People to Call You On It: Enlist help by announcing that you’d like to check your phone less when you are with people. You can even make a pact with others that none of you will be on your phones when you are together, as in "olden times" (like 2005). This can help you to stay connected with those you’re with, and make it into a game of sorts, rather than something you try to do alone.

•Delete Your Apps: If you delete social media apps on your phone, you’ll be forced to only use them when you are at your computer or tablet. This makes it more challenging to maintain a mindless habit of checking your phone, but it doesn’t cut you off entirely. The idea is to make yourself think about it more, and to make social media less available—but not completely inaccessible.

•Try Meditation: Because checking your phone can be such an insidious habit, it’s easy to do it without thinking. Getting into a new habit like meditation can help you to become more conscious of the present moment, the here and now. That can also help you to get into the practice of being here, now, rather than wondering who else is saying something online. Practice being fully present and it will become easier to keep your phone in your pocket.

by Rituparna Malini at https://www.speakingtree.in/blog/phone-detox-5-ways-to-go-back-to-good-old-days/m-lite

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The Smartphone addiction has got all hooked. With millions of apps catering to your different needs, smileys, emoticons and memes instead of relying on words to express what you feel and getting to know the whole world at one tap, you feel severely addicted to your Smartphone. But, is that a healthy sign? On introspection, you will probably find that you spend more time over the virtual domain through the social networking sites rather than having a heart-to-heart with your family and friends.

Of late, smartphones are being held responsible for causing depression as a result of increased isolation.

Let’s find out whether the theory is well propounded or not.

1. One of the major signs of depression is lack of adequate sleep. Sticking to your smartphone till the wee hours of the morning affects your level of concentration, resulting in anxiety and a bad temper.

2. When you spend a lot of time on the gadgets, you slowly compromise on your thinking capacity. You take everything internet serves you as granted without clarifying. With every piece of information available on the internet, there is nothing left for you to imagine or create.

3. Addiction to social networking sites is taking away all your creative potentials; and on one fine day, when you discover this, you might feel increasingly disillusioned, resulting in depression.

4. One of the worst causes of depression is cyber bullying. The virtual world might welcome you with all kinds of threats and humiliation and this happens majorly on the social networking sites. As a result, you feel your self-confidence is at stake, resulting in severely low self-esteem and subsequent depression.

5. Abandoning your smartphone completely is utopian, because they serve needful purposes as well. But, what you can do is limit the time you spend on the device and replace it with something creative. Otherwise, it might not be too late before you start silently sliding into depression.

by Dr. Vasavi Samyukta Sunki, Psychologist

Originally at

https://www.practo.com/healthfeed/be-smart-with-your-smartphone-25188/post

This is an except of original article written by By Partha Das for ISKCON News at http://news.iskcon.com/node/3251/2010-11-13/ex_and_the_internet

No, it’s not a typo! I’ll explain. Fools rush in where angels fear to tread so I volunteered to write the complex and delicate chapter on affection and intimacy, which also deals with the issue of $ex.

Several years ago I began to notice that advertisements began to appear on my computer that were related to the subject matter of my emails. The first time I noticed this I had been corresponding about funeral arrangements for my mother and advertisements began to appear for tombstones and memorials. I wrote a letter that mentioned incense and there were links for Ramakrishna Incense. There is no privacy on the internet.

About a year ago I started some correspondence with the GVT members about our book chapter on affection and intimacy and I started getting all kind of links to singles dating sites. For Pete’s sake I have been happily married for 39 years, why wouldn’t they go away and leave me alone? Next, links started appearing like one that said “View Russian Brides.” I started to think of it an inescapable nuisance, like the mosquitoes at Saranagati Village.

In June my wife and I were in Trinidad doing seminars. One evening I was doing some research for our book from a GBC Wiki site looking for a resolution they had passed about the no illicit $ex principle. After about 10 minutes of unsuccessful searches I closed the window. Behind it I was rather surprised to see a Google aerial photo of the area I was in that had the name and address of every prostitute within a five mile radius. Where the heck did that come from!!?? I started to feel like if I made one wrong mouse click a land mine would go off.

If you ever enter for the “s” word you are marked man. If you are actually looking at that stuff you must get a tsunami.

Since that experience I started using $ when I have to refer to the issue of $ex. Gradually the links and adds that appear have become a lot more benign, like trips to ski resorts and cheap flights to Cuba. Although I am worried that US Homeland Security might be watching the latter.

Well, I will confess that when I was 14, in 1964, I walked about 2 miles from home where no one would recognize me and bought a girlie magazine in a Chinese store. I was totally paranoid the whole time that one of my many aunts or uncles might drive up for a loaf of bread and catch me. It was such an anxiety, guilt filled experience that I threw the magazine in a garbage can about a mile from home.

Fast forward 40 years to the 21st century and porn is everywhere, in the privacy of your home computer and even your office cubicle. What was in a girlie magazine in the 60’s is in the Sears catalogues today. Nudity and sex are portrayed in movies and TV and I don’t even want to think about what might be on the internet.

Here are some stats from Healthyminds.com that throw light on the i$$ue:

• 12 percent of all Web sites are porn
• 25 percent of all search engine requests are for porn
• 35 percent of all Internet downloads are pornographic
• 260 new porn sites go online daily
• 20% of men admit accessing pornography at work
• 13% of women admit accessing pornography at work
• 10% of adults admit having internet sexual addiction

It is not a benign recreational activity as promoted by the porn industry. It creates a huge violation of trust which destroys intimacy in marriage. If you have viewed porn or are tempted, ask yourself if you would want your spouse or friends to know.

If you have to keep a part of your life hidden it will block you from having a heart to heart connection.

Our GVT associates Krsnanandini dasi and Tariq Prabhu have just written a very compassionate, frank and detailed article on the issue of porn and porn addiction. http://www.vaisnavafamilyresources.org/overcoming-porno

They describe what can be done to prevent its snare from undermining your values, your spiritual life and destroying your marriage.

Adapted from their article is a list of symptoms of addiction:

• Your behaviour causes you to act against your underlying values and spiritual beliefs.
• Your behaviours create negative legal, relationship, career, emotional or physical consequences, yet you persist in engaging in those behaviours anyway.
• Your activities hurt the ones you love but you still do them.
• Your activities take up more time, energy, thought and focus than they should or than you would like.
• You frequently tell yourself: “after this, I’m not going to ever do this again. This is the last time that I am going to watch it or read it.” But you still return to the same or similar situations, as if by compulsion, in spite previous agreements (to yourself or your spouse).

If you see any of these symptoms in yourself, admission of the problem is the first step to recovery. If you have a problem with this issue or know someone who does refer them to the above mentioned article.

Pornography is a poor substitute for the love and affection we wish to receive from Krsna and our Vaisnava families.

Partha das, a disciple of Srila Prabhupada, lives in Saranagati Village in BC Canada where he and his wife do internet marriage coaching and premarital education.

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