It’s Christmas, Put That Phone Down!

I mean, after you finish reading this, put that phone down! 😉

Holidays Before Facebook

Imagine the year is 1972. Your state-of-the art Kodak Pocket Instamatic camera is sitting on the coffee table at the ready to capture your Christmas morning memories. As your six-year-old son begins to open his “main” gift from Santa, you grab the camera to capture the moment for posterity. But you take care to get the picture right the first time, as you only have a 12 (or 24) exposure film cartridge loaded and you still need to take a few staged family photos and a picture of the Christmas dinner table. “Yes,” you announce, “I will order extra prints at the drug store for everyone!”

Unlike today, you didn’t get to see the pictures until days later when the film was developed, and you certainly could not share the moment in real-time with family and friends around the world. You couldn’t take an unlimited number of pictures to ensure that the lighting was good or that your hair was just right. And you didn’t get to see (and compare) the moments captured by every close friend and acquaintance; you maybe got to see a few pictures from family or friends in their keepsake “1972 Christmas Album” weeks later as you sat in their living room.

Holidays With Facebook

Today, we certainly live in a time of remarkable enabling technology where you can see, and indeed experience almost first-hand, the holiday events of Facebook friends as they unfold. But the thing about 1972 was that the technology was not at the center of the event. It was, to be sure, a wondrous tool for documenting memories for a lifetime. But it was the event itself, not the documenting of the event, that got all of the attention. We were for the most part unencumbered by technology as we really experienced the true joy of the moment without the peer pressure of staging a perfect “Norman Rockwell-like” photo shoot and sharing it NOW with the world. And we were not preoccupied with checking our technology NOW to see how everyone else’s celebration was going. We tended to be more mindful of the event itself, in the present moment with our full attention.

Being Mindful During the Holidays

At, we encourage everyone to truly experience the joy of the holidays without allowing the technology to distract from the moment. In that never-to-be-repeated moment of love and joy, try to think less about the sharing of the event in virtual real-time, and making impressions that will “wow” your friends through your Facebook posts. Enjoy your holiday celebrations and pay attention in the here-and-now. Concentrate less on the image you want to portray to the world, allow your inner true self to emerge over your ego-self, and share your celebration with the world when the celebration is over. Don’t worry about how your Facebook post will measure up with others. Recapture just a bit of the authentic, truly “engaged-in-the-moment” joy from 1972. Put that phone down!

Happy holidays from As we enter a new year, discover your true inner self through a practice of Facebook Well-Being and mindfulness.

Embrace the REAL you!