Welcome to week three, Reclaiming Your Brain!
This week is all about "mindfulness." You know, the technique that doesn't seem to help with weight loss? But this week isn't about weight loss, its about getting my attention span back.
Yesterday, Day 15, was my day to Stop, Breathe and Be. Catherine tells me the idea is to remind myself to pause before I reach for my phone. I'm to stop what I'm doing, take a slow deep breath, and tune into the details of my experience at that moment. This could mean taking note of the physical sensations my body is experiencing, or it could mean looking at my fellow human beings, or it could mean noticing my thoughts. It doesn't mean checking my phone calendar for the eleventh time that day.
What I found with my two Stops, Breathes, and Ams, was that I most frequently reach for my phone when I need to take a note. Since writing may lead to better memory formation than typing, carrying a pen and a scrap of paper seems like a good strategy moving forward.
And I almost forgot: I was supposed to by an alarm clock several days ago. But my inner Money Mustache took over, and I couldn't bring myself to spend the money. Lucky for me, my wife dug this baby out of a drawer, and two new AAA batteries later, I'm rocking like it's 1999:
My first night with it had some hiccups. My son had a nightmare and kicked me out of bed at about 2 am, so I had to lug the clock to the guest room with me. But when it went off this morning, it was a rush of nostalgia straight to the brainstem. That almost mechanical beeping took me straight back to residency. I was up for good at 5:45. Did I ride my bike like I'd planned? Um...no. But I did read Joan Didion, and that's a pretty good way to start the day.