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April – What do you Connect to?

During my IT career back in the day, I had a pager. A clunky work computer was delivered to my home so I could handle issues over the weekend. I was then given a sporty laptop to take home almost every night. Pagers were replaced with company issued cell phones. Working on a website, I was often expected to be available 24×7.

One day when computer issues impacted our off-shore team in India I had an extra seventy emails to review before 8 AM! I loved being on a plane as I did not have to respond to anyone at work. These days very few places are off the grid, not even planes.

A Swedish study of over 4,000 people found those who constantly use a mobile phone or computer are more prone to stress, depression and sleeping disorders. There is even a new term called IAD – Internet Addiction Disorder. Some things about technology are awesome. I love that text and email can help me find someone in a crowd, let me know of last minute changes in plans and make me feel safer when walking or driving alone.

I heard a lot of people avoiding email checking first thing in the morning. A recommended better start to the day is stretching, meditating, or reading something inspirational. I have adopted this practice, but my inspiration is an email called dailygood.org. It is much needed positive information from sources around the world. Some of the topics have included Tending the Quiet Cadence of our Lives, Inner Beauty, The Power of Forgiveness at Work, The Dogs that Protect Little Penguins and one of my all time favorites is Bus 7 and the Grandma in the Window.

For five years children on bus 7 got waves from a woman every day they rode by her house. One day she was not there and the bus driver learned she had a stroke. The children took a picture of themselves waving from the bus and sent it to her in the rehabilitation center. When she returned home the bus rode by with welcome home letters in every window. This is what the bus driver said. “I’ve told them, ‘this could be your grandma or grandpa — or even you someday,'” Mitzelfeld told HuffPost. “‘Always treat people with kindness, and always treat people with compassion.'”