This post is a little over 2 years in the making. I didn’t feel like I deserved to write it until now.

Be. Here. Now.bag-and-hands phone

For the last few years, I’ve heard this phrase more than I care to admit from my best friend. Be with ME, present in this moment right now. Experience this with ME. Make ME feel important. You see, social media can become an addictive drug for some. It certainly sucked me in. While at dinner, I would check my email, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Not just at dinner. Every second of every day. I had to know what was going on in my online world. What my digital friends were doing at all times. While this addiction gained me some very important friends, knowledge and Klout points; it lost me almost as much. I had to be stopped. I needed an intervention.

Be. Here. Now.

I finally had to hear this phrase enough to recognize its significance and start saying it to myself. A personal mantra that was force fed into my brain. I kept thinking it wouldn’t hurt if I just looked away for a second—just a quick check on my friends. I started noticing the moments I was missing while trying to post that photo to Facebook or check in at the restaurant. (For some reason my phone’s gps will only take forever if I’m trying to check in somewhere.)

Be. Here. Now.

My rehab started with letting my phone be close to dead when going out in the evenings. This made me think twice about using it. Then I started a game of seeing how long I could go without touching my phone while at an event. (Note taking at conferences excluded) The game was getting fun so I started to conveniently forget my phone every now and then when I was out with my husband. Having full confidence anyone with an emergency would call him if they couldn’t reach me. What freedom!

Be. Here. Now.

I’ll admit, I haven’t let go of my digital world. It has significant importance in the real estate world as well as convenience in keeping in touch with people. I’ve simply learned to control my addiction better and treat these things as the tools they are. I’ve learned to recognize the moments where I’m more needed in the offline world. I constantly hear frustration from wives, husbands and parents about how their loved one just won’t stop and pay attention to them. Look, we are only here on this earth for a short time. How many of those Facebook friends and Twitter followers will be there at your funeral? How about those offline friends and family members? Will they feel like going? Sobering thought, isn’t it? Go ahead, borrow it as needed. I won’t mind.

Be. Here. Now.

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