29 May 2012

Hi Team,

I hope this finds you well on a cold and wet Monday..  I have just returned from an outdoor training session with a dedicated bunch of ladies who braved the cold and wet conditions to exercise and continue achieving their goals.  Well Done!!

Before I share with you a very interesting article I came across recently, I wanted to fill you in our little bit of local news…

I have had a few people ask if it is too late to  join our group of runners who will do the 10k at the upcoming Melbourne Marathon in October – no it’s not.  If you would like to be involved and give yourself that extra bit of motivation to add in some extra training to your weekly schedule, let me know.  I can hook you up with the group who will get together to run, or if you want to train alone, this is also fine.

The online nutrition programme is proving to be a great resource for the 12 Week Challengers with many achieving great weight loss results in the few short weeks of starting.  It is also on offer to anyone who would like to eat healthy without eating boring food.  With over 800 recipes to choose from, boredom is certainly not likely.  The recipes are quick and easy but nutritionally sound, you can even add your own. Weekly meal planning and shopping list creation for a week can be completed in around 15-20 minutes once you are familiar with how it works.  It really is just so easy.  If you would like further information, please contact me directly.

Whilst this article of interest refers to how mobile phone usage can impact on children, it really relates to all the members of your family, or anyone else important in your life – not just kids.  I found it very interesting to read and perhaps a little confronting at times.  I hope you find it informative and thought provoking.

All it takes is one child and one phone and this tragic recipe can be yours.

How to Miss a Childhood

*Keep your phone turned on at all times of the day. Allow the rings, beeps, and buzzes to interrupt your child midsentence; always let the caller take priority.

*Carry your phone around so much that when you happen to leave it in one room your child will come running with it proudly in hand—treating it more like a much needed breathing apparatus than a communication device.

*Decide the app you’re playing is more important than throwing the ball in the yard with your kids. Even better, yell at them to leave you alone while you play your game.

*Take your children to the zoo and spend so much time on your phone that your child looks longingly at the mother who is engaged with her children and wishes she was with her instead.

*While you wait for the waitress to bring your food or the movie to start, get out your phone and stare at it despite the fact your child sits inches away longing for you talk to him.

*Go to your child’s sporting event and look up periodically from your phone thinking she won’t notice that you are not fully focused on her game.

*Check your phone first thing in the morning … even before you kiss, hug, or greet the people in your family.

*Neglect daily rituals like tucking your child into bed or nightly dinner conversation because you are too busy with your online activity.

*Don’t look up from your phone when your child speaks to you or just reply with an “uh huh” so she thinks you were listening.

*Lose your temper with your child when he “bothers” you while you are interacting with your hand-held electronic device.

*Give an exasperated sigh when your child asks you to push her on the swing. Can’t she see you’re busy?

*Use drive time to call other people regardless of the fact you could be talking to your kids about their day—or about their worries, their fears, or their dreams.

*Read email and text messages at stoplights. Then tell yourself that when your kids are old enough to drive they won’t remember you did this all the time.

*Have the phone to your ear when she gets in or out of the car. Convince yourself a loving hello or goodbye is highly overrated.

Follow this recipe and you will have:

• Missed opportunities for human connection

• Fewer chances to create beautiful memories

• Lack of connection to the people most precious to you

• Inability to really know your children and them unable to know you

• Overwhelming regret

If you find this recipe difficult to read—if you find that you have tears in your eyes, I thank you, and your child thanks you.

It is not easy to consider the possibility that the distractions of the modern age have taken an undeserved priority over the people who matter in your life.

Here’s the thing: You don’t have to follow the above recipe. Yes, it is the 21st century. Yes, the whole world is online. Yes, the communications for your job are important. Yes, at times you must be readily available. But despite all those factors, you do not have to sacrifice your child’s childhood; nor do you have to sacrifice your life.

May I recommend this recipe instead?

How to Grasp a Childhood:

Look into her eyes when she speaks to you … Your uninterrupted gaze is love to your child.

Take time to be with him—really be with him by giving your full attention … The gift of your total presence is love to your child.

Hold her hand, rub his back, listen to her heart beat, and smooth his hair … Your gentle touch is love to your child.

Greet her like you missed her when she was not in your presence … Seeing your face light up when you see her is love to your child.

Play with him … Your involvement in his activities is love to your child.

Set an example of being distraction-free while driving … Positive role modeling behind the wheel is love (and safety) to your child.

Create a distraction-free daily ritual … Consistently making him a priority each day is love to your child.

Focus and smile at her from the stands, sidelines, or the audience … Seeing the joy on your face as you watch is love to your child.

The recipe for “How to Grasp a Childhood” requires only one thing: You must put down your phone. Whether it is for ten minutes, two hours, or an entire Saturday, beautiful human connection, memory making, and parent-child bonding can occur every single time you let go of distraction to grasp what really matters.

The beautiful, life-changing results of your “Hands Free” action can start today … right now … the moment you put down the phone.

Ask yourself this “When my son/daughter is 18 years old, will I wish I had spent more time on my phone/work/social life? Or will I wish I had spent more time investing in time with them?”


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