We rarely have time these days to stop, to pause, to think and more importantly to observe things around us. The smart (or dumb) phone, depending on your point of view, has drawn our attention and taken up even those few extra minutes of spare time that we have.
My sleep clinic is constantly full of exhausted people wanting to know how to get more sleep, fall asleep more easily at night, stay asleep, feel asleep. This last one is interesting - many of my clients complain of feeling as if they've not slept at all even though they may have spent hours in bed and not really been awake.
*(Was Mildly Interesting) ... I've realised that waking up to the sound of a human voice - unless it's someone screaming 'The house is on fire!' - is far preferable to waking up to an iPhone alarm (yes, even Slow Rise). I've realised that it is possible to switch off from the internet, especially if you keep your iPhone in another room and you're a bit lazy.
We rely on our beloved rectangles for everything from telling time to finding out what's happening in our friends' lives, from Googling where we're going to eat to unlocking the mysteries of GPS by telling us which street we're walking down. But the problem is that our smartphones are not going to say: 'Hey, you've been stalking that person on Instagram for half an hour - don't you think it's time to sleep?'
Technology is making our life so much better isn't it? Well the answer is yes and no; yes there are continuous advancements in technology that are making our lives easier and better.
If you have ever spent 48 consecutive hours doing nothing but nourishing your body and soul, you know the value of stepping away from routine and taking a deep breath without the distraction of responsibility. A getaway built around an ambitious itinerary may be a great escape when you are looking to shatter monotony, but it can also leave you longing for a vacation from your vacation once you return home.
As part on my ongoing project to have a digital detox every so often; a few great tips on email management came out from the Time Management course I was on last week. Now in reality it's more of a Brain Management course.
Three weeks on - and thanks to a predictably complicated insurance policy - I find myself still without a mobile phone. The period of mourning has passed, as has the twitchiness of empty hand syndrome, leaving me on the other side of a techy black hole so pleasant, I'm considering quitting this mobile phone malarkey forever. Or at least for a little bit longer.
Gorging on information streams, hungry for just one more click, our mental and physical systems are becoming overwhelmed, overworked, and overloaded. Yet many of us don't realise this until we either take a step back, or until it is too late and we burn out.
Whether we are plugged in or not, the common denominator remains the same - life does not go on hiatus when we plug in, but we do get to choose whether we are there for it.
Everything changes at the turn of the year. At least it feels that way having had a needed break from work and the opportunity to spend time with family and friends. It also offers the chance to consider what the brand new year might bring and contemplate how we are going to make 2014 one of our best years yet.
I'm not saying the English countryside is frozen in the dark ages, but it certainly provides a sense of relief from feeling like the whole world is at your fingertips, which can often be the case in a city like London.
It's always nice to get a good review. Here at my production company Green Lions, we have just spent three years of our lives on a film, PROJECT WILD THING and it is gratifying to find out that people enjoyed it.
When should children be allowed onto Facebook? The site says it only accepts users over the age of 13. New research published this week by Internet security giant McAfee and the Anti-Bullying Alliance says that most children use the Internet away from their parents' watchful eyes (which I can quite understand).
There is a cult of the virtual that has occurred and we are human beings and mustn't forget the art of being tactile and in the world more than we are virtual. Real connection is something that ought to outweigh the time you spend plugged into technology!
Being able to think has great advantages as it helps us function and live our lives. But it's not always an un-mitigating blessing. Our thoughts can trap us if we're not careful. If you find yourself thinking too much about the past you can wind up feeling regretful, sad and guilty.