My nearest and dearest always hear me talking about being present. It is so easy to zone out while you are spending time with your spouse, boyfriend, girlfriend, friends, family, coworkers, etc. You can drift off into space and/or start to play with your phone. It is so easy to get caught up in world news, local news, reality stars, social media, etc. Have you ever thought how much you show up with people who you love and love you? Do you pay attention to them only 10% of the time because the other 90% is spent on your phone?
Our society is losing the value of effective face-to-face communication skills. We are not truly engaged. We are physically present but are not there emotionally at all.
Years ago, my husband and I were at a restaurant. We both were in our own zone. He was looking at his phone and I was looking at mine. As an older gentlemen was leaving he said to us we need to put our phones down and talk to one another. I was a little taken back this stranger pretty much gave us the read. However, It became a wake up call. It made me ask myself, how often do I do this with other people? Do I give the occasionally nod and say oh wow when they finish a sentence? Do I make eye contact? Do I really empathize with people? Am I truly connecting?
We live in a crazy world. We want to know the latest news and gossip. We want to keep up with other people’s lives, but your immediate circle around you may truly need you. Someone on the street may need you to get off your phone to smile and say hello. Maybe the last person they spoke to made them feel sad. And your smile could be right on time. Maybe your coworker could be having issues at home and at lunch he/she needs you to just listen. Maybe your friend wants you to be excited about a new promotion. Possibly, they may want to explain the whole story and want you to be a cheerleader.
Take the time to engage and be present when you can. Unfortunately, you never know when it will be the last time.